Diarrhoea: is the excess of faecal water due to almost unlimited pathologies. To understand if there are diseases within or outside of the gastrointestinal tract laboratory tests and diagnostic imaging is recommended.
If the gastrointestinal tract is considered the primary problem the work up includes step wise therapeutic trials to rule out food responsive or antibiotic responsive pathologies.
If these are not successful endoscopy for taking histological biopsies is highly advised.
Sneezing: this protective and clearing reflex of the upper respiratory tract sounds relatively harmless but can have serious underlying pathologies.
Differentials include infections, inflammation, tumour or all sorts of foreign bodies.
Corner stones in understanding sneezing patients most commonly include a CT scan of the head and endoscopy of the nose and throat.
Weight loss: can be intentional or unintentional.
The latter can reflect a serious underlying condition and further investigations are highly advised after exclusion of a dietary problem.
Anaemia: there is hardly any disease which cannot be linked to any form of anaemia, meaning reduced red blood cell count.
It is important to understand whether it is a regenerative anaemia or a nonregenerative anaemia, presence and reason of possible bleeding or blood loss, duration, and evidence of haemolysis, meaning red blood cell destruction within or outside a vessel.
Due to the multi-faceted nature, further investigations can be very intensive and sometimes frustrating.
Coughing: this protective reflex of the lower respiratory tract has a very important defensive function in the body.
However, if persistent can have detrimental effects on the wellbeing of a patient, not only due to an underlying pathology.
Work up includes steps like radiographs and endoscopy to understand intra and extra thoracic reasons for the origin in a coughing patient