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Do viral gastrointestinal infections affect children differently?

Some types of viral gastrointestinal infection occur more frequently in children than in adults. Rotavirus is the most common virus affecting infants and young children, and is much more severe than in adults. Treatment varies somewhat as well. Children are much more vulnerable to dehydration, and don't respond as well to water for hydration as adults do. They have less body mass, and they turn over fluids and electrolytes faster than do adults.

Intussusception, which usually affects children 6 months to 2 years old, is believed to have a viral origin in some cases.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.