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Avatar universal

Rotten Egg Burps = Projectile Vomiting

I'm a 43 year old male with a long history of stomach issues.  I take prilosec daily and have no idea what a "normal" bowel movement resembles.  Sour stomach, cramps, reflux and soft stools are just a part of life for me and I've been able to lead a fairly normal and mobile life in spite of these issues.

Six weeks ago, I went to work and took one of my kids w/me.  He loves going to the office for some reason and he had nothing better to do on this particular summer day.  Around 10am I started noticing that I was burping quite a bit and my son pointed out that something smelled like "rotten eggs".  I agreed that something did smell putrid and that it was in fact my burps.  As the day continued, the burps became more and more frequent with individual burps lasting longer and smelling even worse (if that's possible).  Around 3pm, I told my boss I wasn't feeling well and excused myself.  I drove to the hospital and the ER was empty.  Not a person in sight!  Wow!  I told the nurse that I was in extreme abdominal discomfort, nauseous and pain radiating toward my back from my stomach region.  Well, somehow that triggered the "high risk heart alert" which got me checked in in record time, and EKG, blood work, and who knows what else.  Eventually they ruled out my heart and I continued to feel incredibly nauseous despite the three doses of anti-nausea medicine they had put in my IV.  Once it was brought under control, they did CAT scans, x-rays and sonograms of my abdominal region.  They checked everything!  They found nothing.  My appendix, galbladder, intestines and stomach appeared normal.  They gave me two bags of iv antibiotics and lots of fluids via the iv. I just figured it was viral.  The next day I checked out and went home having missed a day of work.

Three weeks later, I started tasting the rotten egg burps again and about 3 hours later, I was heaving up my guts.  I'm one of those people who really, really hates to vomit.  I mean, I just wont do it unless there is just no option.  I will feel sick longer rather than throw-up.  I'd take a beating before willfully throwing up.  Anyway, it was an unstoppable force and it just kept coming.  My wife took me back to the hospital ER where they again performed many of the same tests which all came up negative.  They gave me anti-nausea medicine which worked a bit better this time.  Again, after 24 hours, the pain and nausea were gone.

Today, September 7, 2003 I'm starting to taste the rotten egg burps.  I can't afford to miss work tomorrow but more than that, I cannot afford to spend the night and tomorrow morning going through this hellish experience again.  It's just too much.  So, here's what I've tried.  I took 40mg pantoprazole sodium (Protonix) delayed release tablet and an alka-seltzer.  These were 2 of 3 ideas I found on this site.  The 3rd idea said to eat a lime or lemon.  I have to say, the burps do feel a bit controlled but I'm not ready to claim victory yet.  I'll post tomorrow morning and let all know if this worked.  God help me if it doesn't because for sure the medical community at large is not able to.

All of these posts going back ten years and not a single person has said they have been cured yet?  Please, if you have had this problem and have been correctly diagnosed and cured, post a response and let me know.  Or, perhaps you have had this issue and know of a means of dulling the symptoms?  That would be great too.  I just can't believe that after over 40 years of never having anything like this happen, now It has happened 3 times in six weeks.  Again, I'll post if my rotten egg burps have not turned into nausea by morning.


This discussion is related to Sulphuric/ Eggy burps and stomach cramps.
127 Responses
Avatar universal
I suffered from the exact same symptoms weekly (and really thought I was alone in this!) since I was a small child. Rotten Egg Burps (the WORST part) followed by nausea, severe cramps, vomiting, diarrea, the works. Only after throwing up everything I'd ever eaten in my entire life would it go away eventually. Doctors never knew what was wrong and there's still nothing much online about the cause of this illness. After logging what I ate for quite a while, we figured out that the common denominator was RED DYE #40! I am an adult now who will not eat anything anywhere that even has the possibility of having the dye unless I can read ingredients (which is a TON of stuff, people! ...even some "white" things like coffee creamer packets and such...take a look at things and you'll be amazed) and I hardly, if ever, get this illness anymore. (knock on wood!) I go YEARS without being sick all because I simply avoid Red Dye #40. Just a suggestion because it's worked for me! Hope this helps some of you out there...
I am a 14 year old kid I have had these once before about 6-8 years. I woke up last night with a stomach ache bUT nothing came out. Then I felt the burps. I went to sleep. Couple hours later I woke up vomiting as soon as I woke up. There went all my food. I drank a 16 Oz bottle of water then vomited that up 15 minutes later now I'm sitting in the bathroom hoping I don't vomit again. When I do vomit i vomit like 7-12 times the last couple of them my dad would slap my back and the last bit would come out. When I vomit it is so hard to breathe I hate it and I get scared. I want to know if there is anything thathat can stop this from happening.

-thank you
In advance
Avatar universal
Sorry I don't have an answer for you or me.  I have been suffering from the same thing for about 9 months.  It happens almost monthly for me.  I'm a 46 year old female.  I've never had stomach problems before. The first time it happened I thought I must have eaten bad eggs, because the burps were horribly smelly.  I'd never had anything like that before.  Then I vomited all night long.  I assumed it was food poisoning.  Then it happened about a month later.  Same exact smelly burps preceded a long night in the bathroom.  After it happened for the third month in a row, I started keeping track of the episodes, but I can't make any sense of it.  Neither can my doctor.  Yesterday, the horrible burps started again!!!!  For some reason, I just had terrible gas and a bad stomach ache, but never threw up.  Thank God!  I hate throwing up more than anything!  I'm now online trying to find an answer for this. Every episode is the same.  I usually start feeling burpy in the late afternoon/evening.  I have the terrible burps for about 5 hours, then horrible vomiting lasts for a few hours, then I'm exhausted but feel better, kind of like a 24 hour flu.  What could be going on?????
Avatar universal
I found this thread online, I have been suffering the same as you, no one seems to have a clue what it is.

I have tried antibiotics, alka selzer, you name it.  A "cure" works for s short time then it is back again.  I sense it is bacteria but am hopeful you have found an answer.

Please let me know.  I am a 46 year old female, I have suffered from this since about 33 years old.  I was in Phoenix when it started, has stayed with me in moves through 3 states so I know it isn't local flora.
Avatar universal
Perfectly described.  I am a 37 year old male and have had these "episodes" for 19 years.  I have had upper endoscopies, barium small bowel follow throughs.  Unlike a stomach virus, the episode is instantly cured after throwing up.  I have not matched it up with a specific food but 90% of the time I experience the episode when enduring unusual higher levels of stress at work or home.  The sour burp is as if my digestive system shuts down and food sours or rots in my stomach until a throw it up.  ever so disgusting. If I am able to prevent throwing up or at least postpone it, I will have total liquid bowel movement.   My GP has prescribed a medication to help empty my stomach but did not seem to help when the episode set in.  I will be visiting a true Dr. House next week and will post what he has to say.
Avatar universal
I feel a little bit better knowing that I am not the only one this is happening to!  Not that I am happy to hear that you are all suffering but I was beginning to think that I was crazy.  I am 39.  This first happened 2 years ago right around Thanksgiving.  That time it only happened twice in two months.  Seems that I remember the same from way back when, but not sure.  I, just like you all, start with disgusting burps.  At first these would last for up to a day or two before the vomiting would set in.  These latest episodes started December 22nd.  That time I had the burps for a few hours, threw up then felt better til later that afternoon, then was deathly ill with vomiting, dry heaves, then next day, had sudden involuntary rush of extremely foul smelling, watery, foamy diarrhea that came before I could get to the bathroom.  Talk about embarrassing!  The vomiting lasted about 8-10 hours with about 4-6 vomits during this period.  The diarhea happened the following day and lasted 24 hours.  Then I was weak, but otherwise right as rain.  The night of Christmas, right after dinner was burping rotten eggs again.  The next morning started vomiting and could not stop for over an hour, with lots of dry heaving, I thought my ribs were going to bust out of my abdominal cavity, then that night diarrhea started and this time lasted for 3 days, along with fever and whole body hurting!  Now, woke up this morning with the nasty burps again, and immediately took a Promethazine and went back to bed.  Now, this evening I still have the burps though not as bad as usual but the pain has not gotten bad and have not vomited but am scared to death that it will.  I mean the Promethazine knocks me out.  I don't want to spend my life sleeping and vomiting!  Talked to on-call doctor today who says that I need my pancreas checked out.  Also, thought that I saw somewhere that these symptoms can be caused by Valley Fever, which is common in AZ.  Where are the rest of you from
Avatar universal
I cannot wait to see what your "Dr. House" says.  I finally could no longer fight it off and was in the bathroom for over an hour last night thinking that I was going to die.  Once my body "sensed" or felt that it had ridded itself of whatever the toxin was, I was wiped out.  Slept until after Noon!  Now, my stomach is still tender, but no more "burps"  and am so so tired!
458072 tn?1291418786
Hi, I was reading this thread and hope you will excuse me for jumping in.
have any of you been tested for parasites? I know these little buggers cause all kinds of havoc to our body. Might not be it, but something to check into.
458072 tn?1291418786
something else, I just thought of, the stomach enzymes might not be breaking down your food. Can try papaya enzymes to see if this will help.

Avatar universal
Hello, I have had these rotten egg burps when I was 15 through 19 and no one could figure it out they said it was just a tummy ache and it would go away, well in April of 1995 that it was caused from my gallbladder and they took my gallbladder which did have stones in it and the burp's went away for years and years well I also suffer from Chronic Pancreatitis, Renal failure, Cyrosis of the Liver, and IBS. Well just in the past week I have started to have those same Rotten Egg Burps and can't figure out what is causing them. I dont have a gallbladder so what else could it be. It comes and goes with the nausea, vomiting. I dont ever get diahrea so I am starting to believe it is a back up in the bowl's. but not quite sure. ANYWAYS have your gallbladder because that is what they said it is caused from.... I am not a doctor and can only tell what I have been told and experianced in my life...
701334 tn?1262857103
sounds like something like crohns or colitis,,the boughts of stomach pain,getting nausea and especialy the watery diahrea.
andone ever check into that?
colitis is a nasty thing,,kinda like having some kind of food poisoning that comes and goes!
the rotten egg thing has to be sulfer/sulfides in the system from something thats inflamed,,say the stomach lining,,it has to all be related,in your cases,its comming out both ends!,,,no pun intended,but theres in answer out there,and if my research finds a better clue,ill let you all know.
Avatar universal
Hello, I have had symptoms very similiar to those described in the previous posts..."rotten egg" burps followed by nausea, vomiting, diahrea. The boughts would last about 3 days and then come back a week or two later. During one really bad episode, I was so dehydrated that I had to spend 24hrs at the ER on an IV. All the doctors I have seen have no idea what this could be. I was diagnosed with GERD (acid reflux) and IBS....also I tested positive for h. pylori ( a bacterial infection). I was treated for the h. pylori with antibiotics and follow up tests showed that it was gone...I was also on meds for the GERD and IBS....of course none of it worked and I continued to have the "rotten egg" burps and sickness for many months. This started for me back in 2002 - 2003...it  was a high stress period in my life following a divorce. I was also on anti-depressant meds and sleep aids during this year. At the end of the year I got fed up with doctors that wouldnt listen to me and werent helping anyway...so I completely stopped taking all the meds I was on....ALL of them. Miraculously after about a month the episodes slowed, then completely stopped altogether. For about the first 6 months or so of being off the meds I would get the rotten egg burps only after I drank any kind of alcohol...but taking a Zantac before hand would usually keep it mild or stop it from coming at all. After those 6 months (around the end 2003)...it was gone...or so I thought. At that point I figured it must have been stress that caused it...or a side effect of the anit-depressants I was on...or a combination of the two. But, I just got another attack yesterday...after all this time of nothing. It was very very mild to what it used to be. This time it started with the "rotten egg" burps but they were not nearly as bad.....then I had mild nausea for about half a day...did not throw up or have diahrea....I was a lil gasy and felt weak and achey but I was still able to function normally and eat and drink normally. I went to bed hopeing that it would not be worse in the morning and dreading having to explain all this to another set of doctors again who would only think I was crazy or making it up. Woke up this morning and I feel fine...not 100%...but I was able to get up and go to work....no "rotten egg" burps...even after breakfast I still feel normal..just a lil tired and achey. I have no idea what brought this episode on after 5 years of nothing...I am not overly stressed and not taking any meds (I just remembered that I did take two Acetaminophen 500mg e.g. Tylenol the day before). I was actually coming home from a mini vacation in Mexico when it hit....I did not drink any water there...and only ate one meal of chicken and rice soup the day before the burps started. In the last 5 years I have NOT had any stomach problems..no GERD, no IBS, no heartburn...nothing at all. It is extremely frustrating and scarey to think that this could all be starting up again! If anyone has any information on what could be causing this or sees some commonalitty on what the trigger could be...please post here. It is helpful knowing that I am not alone (or crazy) but also disheartening that so many people suffer from this for years and years without ever finding a cause or cure. Good luck to everyone.
Avatar universal
Hi. I came across this post while looking for a reason for my daughter's upset stomach.

My husband had the same symptoms you all are describing for years. It was weird, each year, around the same time, he would get the "sulphur" burbs and then the upset painful stomach, violent vomiting, diarhea, etc would begin. It would last about a week and then it would be gone. He would describe his need to vomit from the pressure that seemed to build up in his stomach.

Each year it would happen we would go see the Dr - usually toward the end of his symptoms - and they wouldn't find anything.

Well, a couple of years ago, my brother - who spends most of his time overseas working - happened to be staying with us. I described the symptoms to him and how none of the rest of us in the house would get sick. He said giardia (I'm sure it is spelled wrong). We had him checked for it and sure enough - that is what it was. My husband doesn't spend a lot of time in the mountains, hills, hiking or anything - just golfs. They figured he picked it up from drinking water at the golf course. Go figure!

Anyway - have any of you with the symptoms been checked for giardia? Or something like that? I think someone else suggested checking for parisites too. Giardia can stay in your system for years without the proper treatment!!

Hope this helps!
Avatar universal
I have found these symptoms all described as Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome. (CVS)
I have been fired from jobs from this illness (accused of being hungover even though I've been sober for over 8 years!)
I have not been able to get a diagnosis from a doctor, but one Dr. suggested that I was mentally making myself have these episodes. I told him he was right, I look forward to some of the worst physical agony I have ever been through!
I am gluten/cassein free, no drugs, meds, or other, and no alcohol. I stay away from artificial food colorings, preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame, table salt, and many other poisons our govt approves for our consumption.
I believe the triggers can be combinations such as stress and a particular food eaten at the time, but I keep taking things out of my diet, and I still keep getting sick.
I have been diagnosed as having aspergers syndrome, so I can see a possible link to stress and these episodes.
It is best to keep a detailed journal of these episodes.
Avatar universal
I have to agree with (janettorney) I think it has to do with the Liver and Pancreatitis. I suffer from an enlarged liver and chronic pancreatitis. I have the rotten egg smelling burps, and my stomach area directly under my breasts burns like its on fire and it gets hard as a rock and enlarged along with severe pain and terrible gas. I end up very nausea then with diahrea. I take Creon 10 which was prescribed by my MD. and it seems to help along with Morphine pills. These spells come on at any time I can't say what triggers them I thought maybe when I got upset but I really can't say that. They can last for hours to days. I find it best to keep from eating anything and just rest. I don't have my Gallbladder for it was removed around 1998 and these spells started June of 09.  A blood test can show if  you have pancreatitis if gotten when your having the attack. I hope this well help some and if anyone has anything like this and was told its from the same condition as I explained please let us know.
762824 tn?1234393342
I am amazed at how many people are going thru this and in nearly the exact manner that others are going thru it!
I have suffered from the rotten eggy burps recently in my life since the fall of 2008.  I do have memories of having these burps, followed by upset stomach and diarreah thru out my life, but not on a regular basis.

My recent episode started about 5 months ago.  I thought maybe it was a flu, and then rules that out when noone else got sick.  Then we figured it might be the fish oils I started taking, so I stopped taking those.  I have a bunch of suppliments that I am supposed to take and I notice that when I am NOT taking them I am fine, but then once I start taking them regularly again I get the episodes again.  I can't seem to pin point which one it is!  I am determined to figure it out because it is so painful and stressful.

Last night's episode was the WORST to date.  

As usual the burps started in the afternoon, and progressed thru the night.  So bad that when I did burp I had to blow it away and move from it fast because the smell was horrid.  As the night progesses on my stomach will swell, below my breasts, making me look pregnant!  It gets hard and very hot to the touch.  On the inside it feels like I am on fire!  When I take my temp, I have a low temp, usually in the 96 degree range.  But I feel hot, yet have chills and shakes.

Last night was the 1st time I had the severe vomiting episode.  It started with a burp in which food I had each about 9 - 10 hours earlier came up my throat!  I was grossed out. Then about 30 minutes later puking started and it was a dark brown.  It burned my throat like someone poured acid inside of my, shook me up and the I'd pop.  Never has vomiting made my thoat feel so raw.  It has been over 12 hours since the vomiting episodes and i still have the shakes and have only had water and half of a banana.  When I tried to each my stomach hurt and I was unable to eat anymore.

I have a Dr's appointment tonight so I HOPE that they send me for tests.  I will mentione the things I read in this thread, and I hope they take me seriously.  My regular Dr is on vacation and I get nervous with seeing someone else.

I am determined to get an answer and figure this out!  

762824 tn?1234393342
Oh, I forgot to mention that the latest episode that came on yesyerday, started about 4 or so hours AFTER getting a shot 1cc hydroxycobalamin (B12) and 1cc of a B complex.  It was a red color, so I was wondering if the red dye in it could be the culprit (saw someone mention that above.)  However, I can't remember anything with red dye causing it before.

762824 tn?1234393342
UPDATE - I went to the Dr. last night, she thinks it might be an ulcer.  I am waiting on a GI referral to go thru.  She has me taking 40mg or Protonix daily.  

I will post when I get into the GI specialist.
Avatar universal
What is wrong with you people? Did anyone read my post? I have had a liver biopsy. They found nothing. I had an upper endoscopy, they found nothing. I have a strict diet as I mentioned, still happens. Hey Girlmom, I'd be willing to bet it's not an ulcer, matter of fact if you do a search on symptoms of Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome and of ulcers, you will see what you are having symptoms of.
Read the first post here, ten years of posts about this, how come no DR wants to post on this topic? I see DR posts on other topics, but none here. Prescription without proper diagnosis is unprofessional and unethical at the least. "I think you might have an ulcer,  I don't really know, but here, take some pills for acid reflux. Just ignore the little pamphlet that has all the scary possible side effects (conveniently written in very small, stale print) and let us professionals handle this matter. Don't ask questions".
Wake up! Doctors admit that a vast part of their education comes from the drug companies who make the pills. Why is there no solid info on what we are experiencing? Because no drug company has taken an interest in it. Period. So doctors are steered away from the subject. Most doctors that I talk to know of CVS, but know little about it. imagine that! The rest have never heard of it.
Want to know the funniest thing about this? It might involve some other factors or a combination, but I would be willing to bet that stress is the #1 factor to setting off an episode. I challenge everyone who reads this to do a real search on CVS (cyclic vomiting syndrome). The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Doctors will start removing your organs eventually if you keep telling them you need help and they can't find a cure. THERE WILL BE NO CURE WITHOUT PROPER DIAGNOSIS !!! CVS is not known to have a cure, nor are there any meds for it currently, but everyone here sounds like they have it.
I will use my time to research more, but I just ask that you save yourself some trouble, time, and money by listening to those who have been there, done that!
762824 tn?1234393342
Hi Scotty, at first I started to take offense to your reply, the manner in which you put it forth.  But I decided it was not worth it.  I respect what you have to say.  The Dr I saw was not my regular Dr.  I see a Naturopathic Dr who is not big on surgery and pills, but she is on vacation right now, so I had to settle for another Dr in her practice.  I am not going to be blind to the option of it possiblybeing an ulcer.  I am also not going to say it is not a parasite or stress related.  All make sense.  I am one who will check all avenues and not take chances.  I won't let Drs start cutting part of my body to biopsy unless it is absolutely necessary.  The only reason I am taking the protonix is to see IF it works.  My husband and I are big on natural health, but right now, we can't figure out what this is and just want to calm it down a bit until we figure it out.  For me, I doubt it is CVS because the last episode I had was the ONLY one where vomiting was a factor, and it was the same day I had a vitamin B12 and B Comples shot, not sure if it caused the vomiting of not.  I have a million allergies, so it could have been an allergic reaction.

I just read a little on CVS and it doesn't seem to fit what I am dealign with.  However the ulcer scenerio does.

Thanks for sharing you opinions and information.
Avatar universal
Ever since I was 5 years old (I am now 43) I have suffered with this syndrome.  At first, it would happen about once a year, the rotten egg belch followed by throwing up and/or diarrehea.  When I started my career as a teacher and was extremely stressed out, it was at its worst and I was sick more often than not.  Luckily, coincidentally, I was in the beginning of an attack on the day I had a gastroscopy done.  The doctor said I had something called Bile Gastritis and he prescribed 1 gram of Carafate 4x a day.  It helped!  Twenty years later, I still take Carafate once daily (more if I am having problems).  I still get the "burp" periodically if I eat poorly or bend over after eating for some reason, but I try to manage it with the Carafate and it never gets to the horrible point that it used to.  Sad thing is my 12 yr. old son has the same problem.  It is good to hear that we are not the only people in the world with this - I have never come across anyone else with this problem.  Nobody can imagine what it is like unless they have experienced it.  
Avatar universal
Im 21 y.o. for about the past month maybe a little longer I have been experiencing something similiar whenever I belch it taste of boiled eggs at first I just thought it was the foods I was eating which I found to contain no egg product in them and I had not had any form of eggs in months prior to this. Until yesterday I only experienced the belches
though yesterday I began to experience very painful stomach discomfort that dropped me to my knees and in minutes I was on the bathroom floor vomiting
762824 tn?1234393342

Interresting.  I too had this in my childhood.  Not chronically, but enough to remember it.  Never thought anything of it until you said something.  When I got it as a kid it was only the burps, not the bloating, stomach pain, diarreah and vomtting.

I will ask my GI Dr about Bile Gastritis.

Avatar universal
Hi, I'm a nutritionist.  If traditional doctors can't find the problem, consider see a holistic doctor.  A good one.  And have a test done called a Heidelberg Gastrogram (google this)  Good Luck!
Avatar universal
Hi everyone... I am a 25 year old female from Louisiana.  I am having the same problems as everyone else and for the same reason I am here online trying to find a "cure".  Friday, today is Sunday, I woke up with these horrible burps and by 9 am I was vomitting while driving my new car I have had a month!  It was so bad I had to open the door and throw up and try to pull over all at the same time in a line of traffic on a curve! With a cop two cars behind me!!!! My fiance brought me to the ER and I was brought to the back right away and hooked up to an IV and was given Phenegrin, Demerol and something else because I had thrown up nearly 14 times in a little over an hour and a half.  The ER dr told me that the smell was because my digestive track was backed up and that is what causes us to purge what is in our stomach.  Being a nursing major, I was hoping to find a real reason why I am always getting this. I have had this problem as far back as I can remember and never once has a doctor given me a diagnosis.  I have heard it is from sulfur, constipation, and even food poisioning.  I have had my gallbladder removed already and the only problem I have now is acid reflux.  My best friend also has the same problem and I never knew about it.  She did say that she has to let it go away on her own as well.  I was prescribed three meds, one being Oxycodone to stop the pain, an anitbiotic and some kind of nausea med.  Today my burps came back!  I am miserable but mostly because I am leaving for my first trip to Hawaii in three days for 4 days!   I am soooo afraid that my vacation will be ruined because of this horrrilbe problem!  I don't know what to do and I am afraid to see a gastroenterologist within the week due to unexpected tests and fear I would need to stay in LA.   I sure hope the rest of you find a relief because I am searching just as hard!  I never take pain pills but I just took that Oxycodone and IBS pill, I found over the counter, and my naseua med hoping the dr was right and this will help!  
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