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An Eletter published in response to Green for danger! Intestinal malrotation and volvulus1 highlights a recent BMJ publication2 that explored the perceptions of nurses, postnatal midwives, parents and GPs, regarding the colour of bile stained vomit. The study concluded that there is no clear consensus on the colour of bilious vomiting, with many respondents unaware that green vomit indicates bile. The authors also point out that yellow vomiting in babies should not be disregarded as some of their patients with yellow vomit were found to have bowel obstruction.

In summary: it is more informative to ask about the colour of the vomit rather than whether it contained bile. Also, it is not only green for danger, but sometimes yellow too.