What to do if children with enteritis have bloody stools

Disease science

What to do if Children with Enteritis Have Bloody Stools



Enteritis is a common condition in children, characterized by inflammation of the small intestine. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. One of the most common symptoms of enteritis is bloody stools.

What Causes Bloody Stools in Children with Enteritis?

There are several possible causes of bloody stools in children with enteritis, including:

Bacteria: Bacterial infections, such as Salmonella and Campylobacter, can cause inflammation and bleeding in the small intestine.

Viruses: Viral infections, such as rotavirus and norovirus, can also cause enteritis and bloody stools.

Parasites: Parasitic infections, such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium, can irritate the small intestine and cause bleeding.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): IBD is a chronic condition that causes inflammation of the digestive tract. It can lead to bloody stools, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.

Other conditions: Other conditions, such as food allergies, celiac disease, and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), can also cause bloody stools in children.

When to Seek Medical Help

Bloody stools in children can be a sign of a serious underlying condition. It is important to seek medical help right away if your child has bloody stools, especially if they are accompanied by any of the following symptoms:



Abdominal pain




Your doctor will perform a physical exam and ask about your child's symptoms. They may also order tests, such as:

Stool test: This test can help identify the cause of the bloody stools.

Blood test: This test can check for signs of infection or other underlying conditions.

X-ray: This test can help rule out other causes of abdominal pain, such as a blockage.


The treatment for bloody stools in children with enteritis depends on the underlying cause. For example, if the cause is a bacterial infection, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. If the cause is a viral infection, there is no specific treatment, but your child may need to rest and drink plenty of fluids.

In addition to medical treatment, there are several things you can do at home to help your child recover from enteritis, including:

Keep your child hydrated: Dehydration can be a serious complication of bloody stools. Encourage your child to drink plenty of fluids, such as water, electrolyte solutions, or broth.

Feed your child a bland diet: A bland diet can help reduce inflammation and diarrhea. Good options include rice, bananas, applesauce, and toast.

Avoid giving your child dairy products or caffeine: These substances can worsen diarrhea.

Get your child plenty of rest: Rest can help your child's body recover from enteritis.

Contact your doctor if your child's symptoms worsen: If your child's bloody stools persist or worsen, or if they develop any other symptoms, such as fever or vomiting, contact your doctor right away.


The prognosis for bloody stools in children with enteritis depends on the underlying cause. If the cause is a bacterial or viral infection, most children will recover completely with treatment. However, if the cause is a more serious condition, such as IBD, the prognosis may be less favorable.


There are several things you can do to help prevent bloody stools in children with enteritis, including:

Wash your hands frequently: This can help prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses.

Keep your child away from sick people: If your child is exposed to someone who is sick, keep them away until the person is no longer contagious.

Make sure your child's food and water are safe: This can help prevent food poisoning.

Get your child vaccinated: Vaccines can help protect your child from certain types of bacteria and viruses that can cause enteritis.

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