Gastroenteritis is a viral inflammation of the intestinal tract, often called stomach flu or stomach virus. While gastroenteritis typically lasts only one to two days, it can extend to 10 days and require serious medical attention due to dehydration. Symptoms of gastroenteritis are pretty noticeable, as they will interrupt one's ability to carry on daily activities.
Nausea and Vomiting
The inflammation of the intestinal walls often pinch off the body's ability to push solids from the stomach and through the intestinal tract. As a result, the body will reject the food by forcing the ill person to vomit. The body may continue to be nauseous after the stomach is empty, causing the ill person to throw up stomach fluid or have dry heaves.
Inflammation in the intestines pinches off the natural digestive flow and returns food as vomit. In some cases, the inflammation will form lower in the digestive tract. In order to evacuate the intestines, the liquid and solid waste will likely become diarrhea.
The resulting dehydration and inflammation will lead to the expansion and contraction of the stomach. The result is cramping and pain in the stomach. The cramps typically accompany diarrhea.
Flu-like body aches
The dehydration and lack of nutrients will often times lead to widespread pain throughout the body, like that of a flu. Muscle aches and headache may be accompanied by muscle cramping and spasms.
As the virus spreads through the digestive system, the body's defenses will try to attack it and cure the ailment. The end result is fever. Typical fever accompanying gastroenteritis will result in low-grade fever--99.5 to 101 degrees Fahrenheit. More severe cases will lead to higher fevers as the body devotes more resources to fighting the virus.