Recognizing chronic diarrhea and what to do about it

Pediatrician Lawrence Kagan, MD, shares advice for parents on how to tell if your child has chronic diarrhea and how to help treat it in your child
Symptoms And Treatments For Chronic Diarrhea In Children
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Recognizing chronic diarrhea and what to do about it

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To me, chronic diarrhea is a diarrhea that lasts more than two weeks. There are plenty of illnesses that will give you a brief period of diarrhea, and as long as the child remains well-hydrated and there is no blood in the stool, I don't get very worried. There are infections, though, that can cause a prolonged diarrhea. More than two weeks is when I start to send stool studies out to look for interesting things and stuff like that. There are other causes of chronic diarrhea, like inflammatory bowel disease and Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn's disease, but those tend to present with more cramping. In addition to the high output, but also with blood in the stool. Those would be obvious to you, if that is happening. What I suggest if you are having diarrhea, if hydration becomes an issue or diarrhea that lasts for more than two weeks, see the pediatrician. Have your pediatrician send out for those stool studies.

Pediatrician Lawrence Kagan, MD, shares advice for parents on how to tell if your child has chronic diarrhea and how to help treat it in your child

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Lawrence Kagan, MD

Pediatrician

Lawrence Kagan, MD, FAAP, is a UCLA honors graduate, with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry. He received medical training at USC Keck School of Medicine, and completed his internship and residency in Pediatrics at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. In addition to passionately studying neonatal, general pediatric and adolescent medicine at CHLA, he had the opportunity to train under some of the greatest minds in subspecialty pediatrics, diagnosing and managing the rarest and most complicated childhood ailments. Prior to opening Westside Pediatrics, he worked as an attending physician at the CHLA Emergency Department as well as at Cedars Sinai Urgent Care. Dr. Kagan is a native of Los Angeles and is happily married with two children.

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