Health A-Z

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Since diarrhea has many possible causes, your doctor will ask you about your personal circumstances. Recent travel history or exposure to family members with similar symptoms might suggest an infection.

Your doctor will review your symptoms and examine you. If you have severe symptoms, your doctor also may ask for a stool sample. The specimen will be analyzed in a laboratory to look for infectious causes.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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