CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Doctors in southern Illinois warn to be on the lookout for signs and symptoms of a stomach illness in the coming weeks.
The Rotavirus is one of the most common illnesses among young people in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Pediatrician and Doctor Lukasz Dabrowski warns to look for symptoms such as loss of appetite, tiredness, diarrhea and vomiting. He said the virus is seen all year round but the amount of cases tend to rise during the school year as the virus is contagious.
"And so the earlier you get a hold of it the better off you'll be in the long run," Dabrowski said.
Dabrowski works at Southern Illinois Healthcare's Center for the Medical Arts in Carbondale, Illinois.
The virus can effect person at any age but can be especially harmful to children under the age of five, Dabrowski said.
"Probably keep them out of school for a couple days until symptoms improve or at least resolve," Dabrowski said."And the thing is you want to keep a close eye on them at the house so that you can be hydrating them as much as possible."
Darbowski suggests that parents vaccinate their children at a young age, since the vaccine is only available to infants under six months old.
Any person that contracts the virus should get plenty of rest and drink lots of water or liquids with plenty of electrolytes for younger children.
"The younger is the most dangerous and the reason for that is it is very easy for them to get dehydrated," Dabrowski said.
Before the introduction of a Rotavirus vaccine in 2006, nearly every child in the U.S. contracted the virus before age five, according to the CDC. Still more than 400,000 cases are reported each year in the U.S. and up to 60 cases resulted in deaths.