Medical Q&As


I have a 14 month old baby who every 6-8 weeks suffers a bout of vomiting. This normally last for just one day and the vomiting normally subsides when she vomits green / yellow substance, which I presume is bile. My mother said these sound like bilious attacks and are fairly normal. My brother suffered from the same when he was a baby. Do you have any additional information as I haven’t?

The green/yellow material does sound like bile and this simply indicates that the baby has emptied its stomach and is bringing up some bile from its small intestine. Given the context you have described this is not of any great significance and simply indicates that the vomiting was quite forceful. The lay term of “bilious attack” is not a bad description for what we would normally describe as gastritis, which is not to be confused with gastroenteritis. Gastritis is a very common complaint and simply means that the stomach is inflamed. This can happen as a result of mild viral infection or sometimes it can be dietary in origin. Since these episodes are very sporadic I don’t think you really need to change your routines in any special way. If the attacks increased in severity and frequency or if there was any evidence of failure to thrive then it obviously would need to be checked out further.