Seizures Due to to High Fever

Updated on May 10, 2008
H.S. asks from Kings Mills, OH
12 answers

My 3yo daughter had a fever last evening, the highest I saw it was 102.9. Knowing that a fever is the bodys way of fighting something, I decided not to give her any meds. Through her monitor (after being asleep for 90 minutes or so) I heard her let out a loud moan. I ran upstairs to find her convulsing. My husband called it a seizure. I hesitate to call it that, but I have no idea. It lasted 90 seconds, and then she was unresponsive for the next 5 minutes with her eyes closed. We finally got her awake, it took her atleast 10 more minutes to respond to our questions. She was out of it. After talking to my mom, she said that some children do this with a fever, but neurologically are totally normal. She is doing better today, and has her 3 year check this Friday. Can I expect that they will tell me she is ok? Will they send her for neurological testing or will she be put on any medication? Has anyone seen this with a fever, and otherwise a very normal healthy child?

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So What Happened?

Hi ladies! Julia had her 3 year check up today. Her ped. said it sounded like Febrile Seizures, and he said its not something that would do any damage. We are scheduling her for an EEG next week to take a look at things. Thanks for all of the responses.

More Answers



answers from Cleveland on

Hi H.
First I had them back when I was about 2-3 yrs old. Back then they thought that was sizure related. So I did a tons of eegs. I called it curling my hair. My curls came through great when I had them...

Fast forward from the 70's to TODAY!!!

My daughter 3 at the time. Had a fever related sizure. I noticed she had a fever. I went to drive to my mother in law's house across town. I had the motrin there. She went from sitting on the couch. To unresponsive and eyes rolled up in the head staring. My husband picked her up. Put the top of her head under a tap of cold water. To try to get her to respond. I was home within 5 min of the start.

He ran out with her in a blanket. And kept her in his arms. Due to the fact that she was in her birthday suit. I drove to the hospital (3 min away)

They rushed her in. They still couldn't get her awake or responsive.

They had called her pediatrician from the local children's hospital. The children's hospital dispatched an ambulance. It took them 20 min to get there.

In the mean time the hospital she was in. *totally rural hospital* was going to do a spinal tap on our baby. We are TERRIFIED. Just when they opened everything. The ambulance called said 5 min away. They said we are doing a spinal tap.

The drivers said.................
NO if she needs one we will give her one when we get her to Akron Ohio.

She spent the night. She loved playing with everything. She had woke up on the way to the children's hospital.

My daughter is now 10 1/2. She had NO PROBLEMS.

The pediatrician nurses HATE me. If she hits 100 F. I have her and her brother/sister in the ER. They are like not till the fever hits 104 F.I tell them it not happening.

But I do this to keep down the fevers

We start with a dose of Motrin
Then 2-3 hours later
they are given a dose of tylenol

Keep doing it till it goes away.

Just let the doctor know what happened.

FYI Girls have them more often....or boy that are red headed............i got 2 blond girls and a RED headed boy



answers from Cincinnati on

That sounds like a febrile seizure. My son had high fevers of 103-105 starting when he was about 2. We rushed him to the ER when he had his first one and we went through an EEG which showed normal activity. He had several more over the next few years when we missed the high fevers. What worked for us was keeping his fever from getting really high. As soon as it nears 102-103, we'd cool him down with a sponge bath, lukewarm bath or just take his clothes off. If that doesn't do it, we'd use Ibuprofen. Fevers are good but is harmful to the brain when the temp is too high. If it's normal febrile seizures, I'm told they usually outgrow that by around age 5.

My son is 6.5 now and doesn't have high fevers or seizures anymore but we're always cautious. He does have undiagnosed global developmental delays. His latest EEG showed normal activity. Personally, I would be more pro-active just in case I could prevent any lasting damage but it all depends on your comfort level.

Good luck.



answers from Indianapolis on

Last summer my neice had a seizure due to a high temperature. She is neurologically fine, as i'm sure everything will be fine with your daughter.



answers from Toledo on

Hi H.,

This happened to my daughter a year ago. She was just about a year and a half. She was sitting in my arms and just went into it. Hers lasted about 2 minutes. We called the paramedics because we had no idea what was wrong. As it turns out it happens from a rapid spike in a childs body temp, which the body goes into those convulsions to try to fight the tempature spike. You are right it doesn't cause any damage to the brain, which is at least ONE relief! The dr's told us that it will only happen in the first 24 hours of a new virus (colds and such)The most common factors are children between the ages of 18 & 36 months. It will usually happen in the morning or the evening when the body is having the 2 major tempature changes. Also if it's any comfort they told us that if your child has one, there is only a 30-50% chance they will have another one and they should not happen after the age of 5. So far my daughter has not had any more. But as soon as we see any sign of runny nose or cough, even if she starts to get warm, give her some tylenol fever reducer. We keep some upstairs and down stairs so we have it our mercey. Good luck and if you have any more questions please feel free to contact me privately.



answers from Cleveland on

My daughter has had high fevers reaching to 105 and we have struggled with this since she was about a year. The doctor told us to throw her in a cool bath and double dose her with tylenol and ibuprofen. Although not enjoyable, it has always worked to keep her safe. At 105, she is pretty out of it to begin with but it gets scary.
This past winter, my mother had my daughter for the day because she has ran a slight temp in the morning. (She's almost 3) When she woke up from her nap she was hot and sweaty and uncomfortable so my mom just cuddled and sang to her because i was suppose to be there to pick her up in 45 mins. She went into culvulsions that lasted about 2 and a half mins. Thankfully, clothes and all, my mother got into a cool shower with her and had a workman call 911.
They did take her to the ER where they ran a couple of tests and gave her fluids through an iv and a popsicle or two. They said it was not something you would HAVE to go to the hospital for but we were also welcome to come for peace of mind. They leave no lasting damage and most children grow out of them.
It was not the temperature of the fever so much as the rapid spike in the temperature which is therefore unpredictable and hard to control ahead of time. They reiterated the piggy backing of the medicine and cool baths.
What we learned from it was to educate anyone who cared for our child about what to do if she ever got a fever. We also now have bottles of medicine everywhere. I keep them on both floors of the house but also at my parents, the babysitters, school, and even have one in the car which is probably the one used most often!
It did only happen that one time and hasn't happened since. We do question our selves about if we were there or had we told my mother what to do to prevent it, would it have happened?
Good luck to Julia and your whole family!



answers from Columbus on

Hi H.,

Understandable that you would be a little scared right now. Anything of that nature is very scary. I have a two yr old that has had two seizures. One when she was 4 months and one not too long ago from high temp. Like everyone else she went thru the eeg., ct scan etc. but they didn't find anything. (At Childrens in Columbus.) The only thing they could come up with and this has been said to us before because of this is that her brain just rebooted. She's doing good now and shows no signs of any damage, but you might want to get that checked. (Side not) My daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia in Sept. 07. But previously with her other she had no diagnoses. You might want to get that checked out. I'm not saying that the seizure was caused by the leukemia or visa,versa. Have it checked out you will feel better.



answers from Jacksonville on

I always give my boys medicine to get their fevers down because I'm afraid of this. Several of my cousins had seizures becuase of high fevers and it scared me, but they were OK. My doctor even warned me of it and that it is totally normal.



answers from South Bend on

I have heard of having a fever related seizure before too. My friends son had one and so did my dad. I had one when I was younger too but that was b/c I got an overdose of medicine. Thats when doctors would prescribe by age not weight and I was really small for my age. I do believe that you should have it checked out b/c you never know if there is an underlying problem causing these. However I would be hesitant to put on medication for seizures unless another would occur. It is possible that it is a one time thing. My dad has only had one in his life and that was age 52. He convulsed, then afterward had really bad memory for a week after. He doesn't even remember his hospital stay or everything that went down or the ambo ride.



answers from Cincinnati on

This is something that should never be taken lightly. I have a friend whoes grandson would have convulsions with a high fever. After the 4th or 5th time in an 8 month span he never woke up. After a cat scan it was determined he was brain dead. The doctors assumed these occurances were just due to his high fever, but in fact it was determined through the autopsy that he had a tumor at the base of his brain that was missed everytime they did a scan.... sorry to be morbid but I just wish that no one every go through such a horrid loss.



answers from Columbus on

I tried the ole theory that giving tylenol while having a fever was not good, let the body do it's job. This got me no where. My first born had his first seizure when he was one.
It was exactly like your daughters. My son was pretty hyper so when I gave him the meds to bring down the fever I noticed he would not rest and acted like he wasn't sick at all. So I stopped giving the meds thinking he should rest. Well I was wrong. Some kids need the meds to keep the fever at a minumum, believe it or not when you give her the tylenol take her temp and you will find that she probably still has a low grade fever. Well my son did this only once and believe me when I say your daughter did indeed have a fever related seizure. Will she have full blown Epilepsy like my son has today, probably not. But you should not take these seizures lightly and most deffintly take her to a neorologist. You can't be too carful when it comes to your little ones and I would not want you to go through what I did and still do.
My son is 23 and goes no where. He has Epilepsy, Autism, and OCD. The OCD is what keeps him at home. Did the fever bring on the Epilepsy, Possibly, no one knows, The brain is too complicated to figure out. Even the specialist can't tell me .
They did however tell me that the fever reducers are there to keep them from burning vital brain cells. It is okay to give them some. Also keeping the body cooled off is a biggy. You don't have to put them in a tub, only if it gets really high, but sponging them off is good. The two seizures my son had were mainly fever related so I think you should take precausions for you daughters sake. Good Luck dear and God bless you and yours.



answers from Bloomington on

look up febrile seizures. sounds like it for sure. they are generally not harmful, just really scary. my son had one of these and we had no idea what was going on.... it was awful!



answers from Youngstown on

Hello. Any time a baby of any age or adult has a seizure they should be taken to the er ASAP. You dont ever want to play with that. Or take a chance that could be costly. And when children have a seizure, the next time it could be worse. Never take a chance that it will be ok. My son is 4, never had a seizure, had no high temp,was not sick, and had 4 within a 3 month period. They told at the hospital always take him to the hospital and after the first one they told me, each one for whatever reason it will be worse then the last one. And they were right, the second one worst then first, third one worse then second.. and they did eeg, ekg they found nothing and he was to a neuro specialist. For high fevers, I also alternate between tylenol and motrin and you can bathe them every 2 hours in lukewarm water.. NOT COLD, lukewarm to help bring a fever down and LOTS OF FLUIDS. I have 3 kids and have been through a hundred fevers.

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