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"What causes green vomit?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat causes green vomit?


My 5-year-old boy started feeling sick after dinner tonight, and was vomiting by bedtime. Normally I'd just brush this off as a virus or a stomach bug, but the vomit is GREEN. And we didn't eat anything that color. Should I take him to a doctor?


Vomiting, of any kind or color, can be a concerning symptoms. I would encourage you to call your child's doctor and discuss this symptom and any associated symptoms. As I am sure you are aware, any chronic symptom in children can be of concern. The color of vomit can depend on many factors. Green vomit is often thought to be that color because of bile. The biliary pigments are substances that are made by the liver, stored in the gallbladder and released into the gastrointestinal tract in order to help with digestion of food. The place that the bile enters the gastrointestinal tract is in the duodenum, which is the first part of the small intestine (just after the stomach). Therefore if ones vomit is green that indicates that the food is not being regurgitated just from the stomach but also from the first part of the small intestine. Green or bilious vomit can occur when the regurgitant forces are high, and therefore propel the small intestine's contents all the way up. It can occur in a gastrointestinal virus. However a major concern if someone is having bile in their vomit is if their is a blockage in the gastorintestinal tract. An obstruction means that the bile cannot go down adn therefore must go up. Often stomach pain and lack of bowel movements are associated with an obstruction. Green in the vomit often means bile. Discuss your child's condition with his doctor as it could indicate a more serious abdominal problem.

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