Family Practitioner Questions Loss of Appetite

Sudden loss of appetite - is it normal?

I am a 56 year old woman, and lately I have been experiencing a sudden loss of appetite. I am not feeling hungry and even if I eat its not more than a few bites of solid food. I have trouble eating more than a few bites of solid food. I am on soups for the last 3 days and am now beginning to worry.

6 Answers

A sudden loss of appetite alone for a few days is nothing to worry about. However, if you have other signs and symptoms in addition to this (such as weight loss or gain) or loss of appetite is > 1 week, I would see a provider.
There are several factors that can contribute to a loss of appetite that range from minor to serious. While I wouldn’t encourage you to worry, I do feel it would be best to be evaluated by your physician.
Having decreased appetite could simply mean that you are ill with a virus. However, if that persists more than a few days, I would recommend getting an appointment to see your primary care provider.
Let us do a physical exam and special investigations and take from there
It may be some problem in the stomach or many other conditions such as physical or mental depression, anxiety, insomnia, thyroid. Need to consult GI doctor and get lab work done.
A few days of not being hungry is not as worrisome as not being able to swallow or actually eat. Do you have a fever? Have you just gotten an influenza vaccine? There are a lot of benign reasons for not being hungry. If you have night sweats and fever, those would be reasons to seek out medical care. If you are still not able to eat, then please make an appt with your primary care provider.

Dr. Kelly Walker DNP, FNP-C, APRN