7 Year Old with Fever and Severe Headaches

Updated on May 07, 2013
M.T. asks from Farmington, ME
12 answers

My 7 year old came home from school complaining of a really bad headache. Took her temp she was running a fever of 102. I then gave her some tylenol and continued to ask her questions. She then told me her head was hurting really bad, her eyes were burning, the back of her neck hurt, and her legs were hurting. I let the tylenol kick in before I took her temp again and when I did it had gone down to 100.9 which was better but she was still complaining about the headache. I decided to bring her into the er where they did a flu test for both a and b which she tested neg for both. They also checked her white blood cell count which was normal. After checking her over they determined she had a middle ear infection ( however had no pain at all) gave us some antibiotics and sent us home. Today she is right back to fever of 102 and complaining of severe headaches and body aches (still no ear pain). Does anyone know what could be going on with her as I dont believe it is just an ear infection. I have had several ear infections in my life and I remember feeling all of them and them being extremely painful. Also with an infection her blood count should have been elevated at least somewhat. I'm not sure what to make of this but if someone has had this happen please let me know.

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So What Happened?

her fever finally broke and she is doing much better. thank you everyone for all the comments. she had me extremely worried and she does a follow up with her dr. in a couple days just to make sure.

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answers from Washington DC on

Did they test her for strep?
Another possibility is sinus infection.

Have her drink water continuously. It will help keep her hydrated and should help keep the headaches/body aches at bay.

4 moms found this helpful

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answers from Austin on

I have found, with me, anyway, that a high fever tends to give me body aches and head aches. That would happen when I had strep throat.....

It may very well be a virus that she will just have to tough out. Keep going with the tylenol and monitor. Be sure she is drinking plenty of fluids, since dehydration can also cause the headache.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Sounds like the flu to me. There are many different strains, not just a and be. They are viral. A fever causes a head ache and body aches. Nothing to worry about. Continue giving her Tylenol, plenty of fluids and rest.

If the temperature, body aches and head ache are caused by the ear infection alone, then she should be feeling better in 2-3 days. If not, she may have the flu, which is a virus and may take longer to get rid of. If she doesn't improve call her pediatrician and ask for advice.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Miami on

I am a little worried about the possibility of meningitis. Her neck hurting is a red flag. Did you mention that to the ER doctor?

If she isn't better by tomorrow, I'd get her reassessed. I sure hope she is better soon!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

Well she is sick.
The tests came back negative.
But it can be for something they did not test for, even the Flu.
Take her back to the ER if she gets worse or has new symptoms.
She has antibiotics now. It takes a day or 2 to see an improvement.
If there is no improvement with the antibiotics, then you need to take her back to a Doctor. Because, another "family" of antibiotics can be taken. If her current one is not working.

We are not Doctors, so can't diagnose her.
But you need to take the antibiotics, as directed. Do not skip, a dose.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Doris Day is right -- my very first thought was meningitis, which can be extremely serious, extremely fast; iit is not something to wait to diagnose. A hurting neck is a key sign of meningitis, along with fever and severe headache. Please get her back to the ER. If it's not meningitis, it sounds like a pretty severe flu, and you should ask them to give her Tamiflu if it's not too late for that -- I think Tamiflu may have to be given within a certain time frame after symptoms start.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Burlington on

My first thought was meningitis too.

Here's a link to a symptom checker:
Being as specific as you can will narrow down the illness possibilities.

Hope she's feeling better,



answers from Boston on

My daughter had the same thing and it ended up being a bad sinus infection. It takes a while for the antibiotics to work so maybe by the 4th day you'll see some drainage. She had the 102 for 4-5 days and then it finally subsided once she started draining. There was also a virus going around school where children had a virus with a fever for 4-5 days so it could be that as well.


answers from Dover on

It does take a few days for the antibotic to really kick in. She could have a virus that will not really respond to antibotic. When my daughter and I have strep, we tend to have a headache and/or backache too. It could be an ear infection AND something else.



answers from Boston on

My 6yo son had the exact same symptoms last week. Turned out to be strep - second time in a month! He didn't complain of a sore throat either time. Hope that helps!



answers from Boston on

Could be strep...head ache, high fever, feeling overall miserable and not necessarily a sore throat right off the bat....

The antibiotics take a couple of days to kick in...also the fever should break w/in 3 days (unless if it's actually the real flu which is more like 5 days but she wouldn't be on antibiotics)

Hope she feels better


answers from Boston on

I understand why you took her to the ER the first time - perhaps it was after hours. But have you consulted the pediatrician? To go back to the ER and see another set of doctors who don't know her history and have a long line of major emergencies waiting for them seems like a huge expense as well as an exercise in frustration. I'm sure your ER discharge forms said to follow up with her own doctor anyway, right?

Call your child's doctor and insist on a good solid consult. Yes, antibiotics take a while to kick in, and that's if this is all ear infection. I imagine the hospital considered meningitis as others have suggested, so either she didn't have the indicators or they missed something which you should bring up with her regular doctor, who can order whatever she needs.

Good luck - I know you are worried and frustrated, but please go to the doctor who knows her and has her information, and is likely to be more responsive to a regular patient. Even if you need more than one visit, you'll get the same staff. She'll be more comfortable in that office as well.

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