Diarrhea is a clinical condition, which is marked by having loose stools or loose bowel movements, at least three times in a day. The stool formed is watery and hence leads to massive dehydration in the body. Due to diarrhea there is severe loss of essential electrolytes in the body, which leads to sodium and potassium imbalance, which may be detrimental to the health of an individual. As the body becomes dehydrated, the body will try to absorb more water leading to decreased urine formation. Since, it is the condition of stress it may lead to increased heart rate. However, the blood pressure often reduces in the case of diarrhea. This is due to a reduction in blood volume, which occurs due to loss of fluids from the body.
The pathophysiological basis of diarrhea is often related to malabsorption. When the digested foods fail to get absorbed in the intestine, it leads to the formation of osmotically active particles in the gastrointestinal tract (GI). As a result water is pulled into the gastrointestinal tract, from the interstitial spaces in the GI epithelium cells. The excess water is egested out of the GI tract. This is the cause of fluid loss in diarrhea. The failure in absorption is often related to an infection in the GI tract, which may be caused y viruses or bacteria. This type of diarrhea is called osmotic diarrhea (malabsorptive diarrhea) and is the most common form of diarrhea.
Various other types of diarrhea can also occur in our body. Secretory diarrhea is a c…
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