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Pediatrics/Morning vomiting caused by cold?


Hello Dr. Olson,

My 5 year old daughter has recently complained of slight headaches (temples) on two different evenings.  Neither one seemed to bother her for more than a few minutes, so I assumed her 6 year molars were the culprit since all four are coming in.

A few days ago, she got a cold - runny nose during the day, stuffy nose at night, etc.  She seemed to be getting better, but very early this morning she woke up feeling nauseous and coughing a bit.  She also has a slight temperature of about 100 degrees.  Her nose is now running like a faucet and she just vomited - 4 hours after waking up feeling nauseous.

After vomiting, she claims she feels "all better" though she's lethargic and doesn't want to eat.

I'm not sure if her cold has just gotten a bit worse (cough and slight fever) and post-nasal drip brought on her nausea and subsequent vomiting OR if she has a stomach bug on top of her cold.  But of course googling these symptoms this morning brought me to sites regarding a brain tumor, and now I'm terrified.

My daughter is generally very healthy and other than 2 slight headaches in the past month (which she's never complained of before) and her nausea/fever/vomiting/lethargy this morning, she doesn't have any other symptoms of a tumor (based on the brain tumor symptoms I read online).

I'm sure I'm overreacting, but wanted the advice of a medical professional to calm my fears.  Do you feel that I have any reason for concern about a tumor or other serious issue?  Or is this almost certainly a situation where mucus brought on her nausea and vomiting?

Thank you in advance for your assistance!  Have a wonderful holiday season!


Hi, Jennifer and Happy Holidays!,

This almost certainly a vomiting episode in a sick kid.  Really we see vomiting very frequently as an accompanying symptom to respiratory problems.  This is not a brain tumor.  Of course, if the cold symptoms go and one is left with unexplained vomiting persistently over a few days, see your doctor.

Good luck, Dr. Olson


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David Olson, MD


I would be happy to attempt to answer any questions about general pediatric topics, either medical issues or behavioral issues. This would include all the various questions one receives in a busy pediatric practice. I`m a board certified pediatrician in northern Michigan and have been in practice for over 15 years. I enjoy the teaching role I have in our practice and would enjoy the opportunity to help others with their pediatric problems.

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