Common Gastrointestinal Symptoms in COVID-19

Digestive system disorders may not be the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about COVID-19 symptoms. But, according to scientific data, about 53% of all patients hospitalised due to the disease have experienced at least a single gastrointestinal problem.

According to doctors at a top gastroenterologist hospital in Kolkata, the incidence of GI disorders is rising among COVID-19 patients. If a person has pre-existing gastric problems, they are at an increased risk for more serious complications.

The evidence dates back to the time when COVID-19 was first discovered. The first patient of the horrendous illness had suffered from nausea for two days and ultimately advanced to diarrhoea. Symptoms related to the gastrointestinal system have made it to the list of the most common symptoms of COVID-19.

Symptoms Of Gastrointestinal Disorders in COVID-19

The main symptoms related to the gastrointestinal system include:

  • Absence of taste or smell
  • Reduced appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Some of the less common symptoms are:

  • Acid reflux
  • Abdominal pain
  • Inflammation of the intestinal tract
  • Indigestion

According to a top gastroenterologist hospital in Kolkata, in most people, these symptoms accompany respiratory disorders, which is the hallmark of COVID-19.

How is COVID-19 Causing Gastrointestinal Problems?

Coronavirus can affect numerous parts of the body, suggests recent research. This virus particularly affects the cells of the intestine and the respiratory cells using a special protein called ACE-2, a receptor protein. The cell membrane has these proteins that assist in controlling blood pressure. After entering the cell, the virus starts reproducing using the human cellular machinery.

Several viral progenies are released after the cell breaks open, and the immune system produces a strong response against these cells and causes an inflammatory reaction. This inflammatory reaction is ultimately responsible for gastrointestinal symptoms.

The viruses can also cause damage to the gastrointestinal tissues, which can produce intense symptoms like nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. The virus may also cause the vagus nerve to act up causing nausea.

Why Does It Matter?

Many studies suggest that gastrointestinal symptoms of COVID-19 are one of the first symptoms to show up in the patients. This, tracking GI symptom can help in predicting the presence of the disease early on. Moreover, it has been observed in many research studies that people with more severe cases of GI infections are more likely to develop severe complications from COVID-19.

Some scientists have come up with a hypothesis to explain the phenomenon. According to this, people taking medications used to treat many stomachs and intestinal problems like those that reduce the amount of acid in the stomach make the patients more susceptible to the infection. That is because the virus usually gets killed due to the stomach acid, and people taking the medications have a lower amount of acid.

The gastrointestinal system should be monitored well in all COVID-19 patients for a better treatment outcome, says a doctor at a top gastroenterologist hospital in Kolkata. More research must be done to formulate a proper treatment plan for gastrointestinal symptoms in coronavirus patients. https://www.ilshospitals.com/ is one of the top gastroenterologist hospitals in Kolkata, where you can visit this pandemic for any assistance.

Keeping Your Digestive Distress in Check

Gastrointestinal or Digestive Distress is caused, due to a variety of reasons, such as stomach flu, food poisoning, parasite infections, or cancer. The major symptom of digestive distress is food which includes caffeine, alcohol, carbonated beverages, fried food, or high-fat food. Typical symptoms of gastrointestinal distress may include abdominal pain, gas, cramps, heartburn, diarrhea, constipation, weight gain or loss, and fatigue. If you suffer from constant stomach problems and digestive issues, you might have digestive / gastrointestinal distress.

Digestive distress is usually caused by unhygienic food, stress, being physically inactive, intake of large amounts of dairy products, stomach infections, or a low fibrous diet.

What is the treatment?

When it comes to treatment, one size doesn’t fill all. So, we combine various treatment options in creating a personalized treatment approach.

  • Healthy diet – A healthy diet keeps your immune system strong and prevents other diseases too. A healthy diet should include a low-lactose diet – deprived of dairy products and should consist of a high-fiber diet – fiber can positively affect constipation and other stomach problems.
  • Avoid Fatty Food – You can avoid consuming fatty and oily foods and aerated beverages if you are suffering from heartburn. You can take lactase supplements, simethicone and probiotics.
  • Probiotic supplement – probiotics are efficient for digestive disorders. These microorganisms help to improve intestinal health and in turn reduces digestive distress.

Some of the best foods to improve digestion are yoghurt, chia seeds, ginger, fruits, whole grains, dark green vegetables, peppermint, and salmon. And some unhealthy food that you should avoid for the sake of intestinal health. For example, high in fats include cheese, carbonated beverages, alcohol and milk and white chocolates.

The best ways to improve your digestive system

  • Manage your stress – Stress hormones directly affect your digestion. Yoga and meditation help to improve not only your mindset but also your digestion.
  • Stay Hydrated – Doctors recommend drinking 1.5-2 litre of water per day to prevent constipation.
  • Fibrous Food – Eating enough fibers helps prevent digestion problems. It’s naturally available in fruits, green vegetables, beans and whole grains.
  • Intake of Zinc – Zinc is a mineral that is critical for a healthy gut, and a deficiency can lead to various digestive disorders. Experts recommend that daily intake for zinc is 8mg for women and 11 mg for men.

Some nutrients are necessary for a healthy digestive system. Ensuring that your body gets enough probiotics, glutamine, and zinc may improve your digestion.

The digestive system plays an important role in our immune system. In our stomach, there are a large number of immune cells which give us 70% of our immunity. There is also a complicated balance of good and bad bacteria that give us a healthy immune system.

At ILS Hospitals, the gastroenterology department addresses all illnesses related to digestive problems. Some of the major organs along with several illnesses include oral diseases, gastric disease, intestinal disease, rectum and anus.

To book an appointment or for any other queries, call ILS Care +91 90514 60000 or visit www.ilshospitals.com

Gastroenterology

The well-being of a human body is often related to the proper functioning of the digestive system. But modern-day diets and lifestyles often tend to meddle in with the smooth functioning, resulting in various minor and major digestive problems. It is only then the expertise of a gastroenterologist has sought after.

What is Gastroenterology?

Gastroenterology is a branch of medicine that deals with the disorders of the human digestive system. Starting from our mouth to the anus, the gastrointestinal tract, along with the alimentary canal, is responsible for the proper digestion of food. Physicians who specialise in this field are called gastroenterologists.

What are some of the common yet lesser-known facts relating to Gastroenterology?

  • Heart burns: Our current lifestyles result in one of the most common diseases stemming from our digestive system and that is gastroenteritis. The symptoms range from stomach cramps and diarrhoea, to nausea and vomiting. What people don’t generally know is that chest pain is also a key symptom of gastroenteritis and is often confused with a heart attack. So, the myth equating chest pain to heart issues is not a safe assumption to make and it is best to consult a gastroenterologist.
  • Blood in stool: Another common misconception is that blood in stool is usually the result of a tear in the track. However, this often stems from GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, a condition where the acids in the stomach irritate the lining of the food pipe and cause blood to pass through. It is safe to consult any gastroenterologist for the same.
  • Smoking & digestion: The most common misconception that people tend to agree to is that smoking helps with digestion. The fact here is that it may help in the movement of the stool but never helps in digestion. On the contrary, smoking causes heartburns, peptic ulcers, liver diseases and also gallbladder stones.
  • Overuse of herbal supplements: The whole fad of switching to herbal and dietary supplements is causing people more harm than they know. People take these without weighing in the side effects just because they are natural. In reality, these supplements, if consumed in excess, include vitamins and minerals that can cause liver inflammation, scarring, liver cirrhosis and even liver failure.

ILS Hospitals has state of the art operating theatre, endoscopy suites, and modern types of equipment and modes of treatment for addressing the diseases. With years and years of research, Gastroenterologists provide comprehensive care for patients involving gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures as well as the interpretation of results. The bulk research performed by them translates to more accurate detection of grave diseases like cancer via colonoscopy. Most of the diseases treated by gastroenterologists are manageable, their main goal is to improve overall the quality of life using advanced clinical care. In case of any emergency, contact or visit ILS Hospitals, a multispecialty hospital, known for its excellent healthcare services. To book an appointment or for any other queries, call ILS Care +91 90514 60000 or visit www.ilshospitals.com