Medicinal Treatments and Natural Remedies for Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome

Medicinal Treatments and Natural Remedies for Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome

Precio Daramola |Mar 22, 2021

Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome Treatment Plans

Cyclical vomiting syndrome (CVS) is a rare disorder that usually starts in childhood. It typically affects children aged 3 to 7, but it can also affect adults. It is characterized by repeated episodes of severe vomiting and nausea that often persist for a long time. Although the condition can be quite disturbing, it is manageable with healthy lifestyle changes and medication. So, what are the best cyclic vomiting syndrome treatment options? Let's take a look.

What Causes Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome?

The exact cause of CVS is not known. Still, experts have linked the condition with digestive issues, genetics, and hormone imbalances.

Many people diagnosed with CVS have abnormalities of the autonomic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system is responsible for controlling blood pressure, digestion, and other involuntary functions in the body. Vomiting episodes that characterize CVS may be triggered by:

  • Emotional stress
  • Physical stress, such as inadequate sleep, exhaustion, or an infection
  • Some foods and drinks, such as chocolate, cheese, and things that contain caffeine or alcohol
  • Extreme weather conditions
  • Menstrual periods
  • Allergies
  • Overeating, not eating for long periods, or eating just before going to bed

What Are the Symptoms of Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome?

In addition to the severe, recurrent episodes of nausea and vomiting, the following have also been found to be associated with CVS:

  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Dry heaving
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Increased sensitivity to light (photophobia)
  • Increased sensitivity to sound (phonophobia)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pale skin
  • Stomach pain
  • Weight loss

Lifestyle and Home Remedies to Manage Symptoms

Lifestyle changes can help control the signs and symptoms of cyclic vomiting syndrome. If you have CVS, it is advisable that you try to get adequate sleep, and once you start vomiting, staying in bed in a dark, quiet room will help.

When the vomiting phase has stopped, it is important that you take in fluids such as sports or energy drinks (like Gatorade, Powerade, and others) diluted with 1 ounce of water or an oral electrolyte solution (Pedialyte).

Some people, after vomiting episodes, may soon feel strong enough to begin eating a regular diet. However, where there is no appetite to eat, you should start with clear liquids and gradually add solid food.

In cases where the vomiting episodes are triggered by stress or excitement, try your best to reduce stress. Also, reducing your portion sizes by eating small meals and low-fat snacks daily, instead of three large meals, may help.

How is Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome Diagnosed?

CVS can be difficult to diagnose because there is no specific test to confirm the diagnosis, and vomiting is a sign of many other health conditions. Since it is common mostly with kids, your doctor may first want to find out about your child's or your medical history and conduct a physical exam. The doctor will also want to find out the pattern of symptoms that you or your child experiences.

After that, the doctor may further recommend the following:

  • Imaging studies: these could include an endoscopy, ultrasound, or a CT scan to check for blockages in the digestive system or signs of other digestive conditions.
  • Motility tests: these are carried out to monitor food movement through the digestive system and check for other digestive disorders.
  • Laboratory tests: these check for thyroid problems and other metabolic conditions.

Are There Treatment Options for Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome?

There is no cure for CVS; however, in most cases, the vomiting episodes stop when a child reaches adulthood. For those experiencing a cyclic vomiting episode, treatment focuses on controlling the signs and symptoms by prescribing the following medications:

  • Anti-nausea drugs
  • Pain-relieving medications
  • Medications that suppress stomach acid
  • Antidepressants
  • Anti-seizure medications

Sometimes, the same types of medications used for checking migraines can also help prevent cyclic vomiting episodes. These medications may be recommended for people whose episodes are frequent and long-lasting or for people with a family history of migraines. IV fluids may also be given to prevent dehydration. However, in general, treatment is usually administered based on the severity and duration of symptoms as well as the presence of complications.

Can Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome Be Prevented?

It is not possible to prevent the onset of CVS, but the following steps can be taken to reduce the frequency and severity of episodes:

  • Identify specific triggers and avoid them.
  • Do not stop taking your prescribed medication, even when feeling well.
  • Make sure that you get quality sleep regularly.
  • Treat any allergies, sinus problems, or other illnesses or infections immediately.
  • Ensure you find effective ways of managing stress and anxiety.
  • Have regular meals.
  • Stay in touch with your doctor. Discuss any changes in symptoms and methods of prevention.

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