definition of empacho by Medical dictionary


A folk illness described in Central America which, while defined as obstruction of the stomach and/or intestine, is understood to mean indigestion or GI malaise, resulting in abdominal pain and bloating, and variably accompanied by nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and lethargy.

Segen’s Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.


(em-pa’cho) [Sp., surfeit, impacted stomach]

A culture-based syndrome of gastrointestinal distress in infants and children ascribed to intestinal blockage, whose symptoms may include bloating, diarrhea, vomiting, and lethargy. In some Latin American cultures, empacho is treated by a folk practitioner, who may use external massage or internal treatments, including herbal teas, commercial laxatives, or olive or castor oil. Some traditional treatments use mercury compounds or lead salts, which may poison affected infants. See: curanderismo

Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners

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