Tag Archives: Febrile seizure

Some Health Quaries & Answers

‘My child is too thin’ :

Q: My daughter is two years old and very thin. She is picky about her food and I feel she does not eat enough. Her weight is only 9kg. Is it a good idea to give her appetite stimulating tonics?


A: Normally, a child weighs triple its birth weight at the end of the first year and adds 2kg the next year. So your daughter may be in the normal range. It is better to try to discover why she does not eat and treat the cause rather than use tonics. Appetite stimulants can have severe side effects. Some of them contain large amounts of iodine, steroids or cyproheptadine (a banned chemical). They are best avoided.

What you can do is reduce her milk intake to 400ml a day. Give half after breakfast and the rest at tea time. Figure out what she likes to eat.

Also, get her dewormed; your paediatrician will tell you how. And remember, some children are just difficult when it comes to food.

Digital spasms :

Q: I get sudden painful spasms in my fingers and toes, especially at night. I am 34 years old.

A: Calcium deficiency can cause this. If you are not on calcium supplements, starting them may help. Consult a physician to help with the diagnosis and dosage of calcium.

Pressure pills :

Q: Is there a natural way to reduce blood pressure? Currently I am on a lot of medication for it.

A: You can reduce your dependence on tablets by achieving ideal body weight (height in metre squared multiplied by 23), walking an hour a day, reducing salt intake to 2.5gm a day, avoiding salted snacks, sleeping at regular hours and reducing stress with yoga and meditation.

Fit and fine :

Q: My son is one and a half years old and has had fits twice. The doctor says it is “fever fits”. I am worried that he may become epileptic. What is a fever fit?

A: A febrile seizure (fever fit) usually occurs in children under the age of 5 during an episode of fever. Only one third of the affected children have a second seizure. A certain percentage of children will develop epilepsy but the incidence is not greater in those who have had febrile seizures. Also, these children do not develop mental retardation nor is their intelligence affected. But a febrile fit can be frightening to watch. To prevent such seizures, fever has to be tackled immediately. Buy a digital thermometer and check the temperature by placing it in the child’s armpit (remember, your hand is not a thermometer). If the temperature is greater than 100°F, give the child 10mg/kg of paracetemol. Remove the child’s clothes and sponge him down with tap water. Turn the fan on full speed. After four hours check the temperature again. If it has risen, repeat the above process. Contact your doctor.

Feet first

Q: I have cracked feet. Not only does it look ugly, when water enters the cracks they become painful and inflamed.

 

A: You could try soaking your feet in hot water to which rock salt and liquid soap have been added. After 10 minutes, scrub the foot gently with a small plastic brush. Then apply baby oil. After a few weeks, you will see a vast improvement.

Source : The Telegraph ( kolkata, India)

Febrile convulsions

Alternative Names:Fever fit,Febrile seizure,Seizure – fever induced

Definition:
Febrile convulsions are seizures associated with a significant rise in body temperature that occur in a child with a high fever of over 39°C (102.2°F).  They most commonly occur in children between the ages of 6 months and 6 years and are twice as common in boys as in girls (Lissauer, Tom-Illustrated Book of Paediatrics 3rd Ed.).

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These most typically occur during the early stages of a viral infection such as a respiratory infection, while the temperature is rising rapidly.

Febrile convulsions can be frightening but they’re rarely serious,  as   these convulsions occur without any brain or spinal cord infection or other nervous system (neurologic) cause.

Three per cent of children have at least one febrile convulsion. There may be a genetic predisposition – up to 20 per cent of relatives will have a seizure disorder including febrile convulsions.

Types:
There are two types of febrile seizures.

*A simple febrile convulsion is one in which the seizure lasts less than 15 minutes (usually much less than this), does not recur in 24 hours, and involves the entire body (classically a generalized tonic-clonic seizure).

*A complex febrile convulsion is characterized by longer duration, recurrence, or focus on only part of the body.

The simpleconvulsion  represents the majority of cases and is considered to be less of a cause for concern than the complex.

Symptoms:-
Febrile convulsions may be as mild as the child’s eyes rolling or limbs stiffening. Often a fever triggers a full-blown convulsion that involves the whole body.

Febrile convulsions may begin with the sudden contraction of muscles on both sides of a child’s body — usually the muscles of the face, trunk, arms, and legs. The child may cry or moan from the force of the muscle contraction. The contraction continues for several seconds, or tens of seconds. The child will fall, if standing, and may pass urine.

The child may vomit or bite the tongue. Sometimes children do not breathe, and may begin to turn blue.

Finally, the contraction is broken by brief moments of relaxation. The child’s body begins to jerk rhythmically. The child does not respond to the parent’s voice.

The seizures are brief, usually lasting only a minute or two and never more than five minutes.  It is usually followed by a brief period of drowsiness or confusion. A complex febrile convulsion lasts longer than 15 minutes, is in just one part of the body, or occurs again during the same illness.

The child loses consciousness, becomes stiff, stops breathing for up to 30 seconds and loses control of their bladder or bowel, wetting or soiling themselves.

Febrile convulsions are different than tremors or disorientation that can also occur with fevers. The movements are the same as in a grand mal seizure.

This stops after a few minutes and the child regains consciousness. Following the seizure they fall into a deep sleep and are often confused or irritable when they finally wake.

Causes:
The convulsions occur because the electrical systems in the brain have not yet matured sufficiently to cope with the stress of a high temperature.

About 3 – 5% of otherwise healthy children between ages 9 months and 5 years will have a seizure caused by a fever. Toddlers are most commonly affected. Febrile seizures often run in families.

Most febrile seizures occur in the first 24 hours of an illness, and not necessarily when the fever is highest. The seizure is often the first sign of a fever or illness

Febrile seizures are usually triggered by fevers from:

•Ear infections
•Roseola infantum (a condition with fever and rash caused by several different viruses)
•Upper respiratory infections caused by a virus
Meningitis causes less than 0.1% of febrile seizures but should always be considered, especially in children less than 1 year old, or those who still look ill when the fever comes down.

A child is likely to have more than one febrile seizure if:

•There is a family history of febrile seizures
•The first seizure happened before age 12 months
•The seizure occurred with a fever below 102 degrees Fahrenheit

Complications:
In about 15 per cent of cases, the child will have another febrile convulsion during the same illness. They also have a one in three risk of a convulsion during a subsequent illness.

Onset before the age of one and a family history increase the risk of recurrent problems.

Most children grow out of febrile convulsions without coming to any harm. However, about one per cent of children do subsequently develop epilepsy (this is more likely if the child has a longer than normal convulsion, or recurrent seizures in the same illness). Talk to your doctor if you’re worried.

Diagnosis:
The health care provider may diagnose febrile seizure if the child has a grand mal seizure but does not have a history of seizure disorders (epilepsy). In infants and young children, it is important to rule out other causes of a first-time seizure, especially meningitis.

In a typical febrile seizure, the examination usually shows no abnormalities other than the illness causing the fever. Typically, the child will not need a full seizure workup, which includes an EEG, head CT, and lumbar puncture (spinal tap).

To avoid having to undergo a seizure workup:

•The child must be developmentally normal.
•The child must have had a generalized seizure, meaning that the seizure was in more than one part of the child’s body, and not confined to one part of the body.
•The seizure must not have lasted longer than 15 minutes.
•The child must not have had more than one febrile seizure in 24 hours.
•The child must have a normal neurologic exam performed by a health care provider.

Treatment:
During the seizure, leave your child on the floor.

•You may want to slide a blanket under the child if the floor is hard.
•Move him only if he is in a dangerous location.
•Remove objects that may injure him.
•Loosen any tight clothing, especially around the neck. If possible, open or remove clothes from the waist up.
•If he vomits, or if saliva and mucus build up in the mouth, turn him on his side or stomach. This is also important if it looks like the tongue is getting in the way of breathing.
Do NOT try to force anything into his mouth to prevent him from biting the tongue, as this increases the risk of injury. Do NOT try to restrain your child or try to stop the seizure movements.

Focus your attention on bringing the fever down:

•Insert an acetaminophen suppository (if you have some) into the child’s rectum.
•Do NOT try to give anything by mouth.
•Apply cool washcloths to the forehead and neck. Sponge the rest of the body with lukewarm (not cold) water. Cold water or alcohol may make the fever worse.
•After the seizure is over and your child is awake, give the normal dose of ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
After the seizure, the most important step is to identify the cause of the fever.

Prognosis:
The first febrile seizure is a frightening moment for parents. Most parents are afraid that their child will die or have brain damage. However, simple febrile seizures are harmless. There is no evidence that they cause death, brain damage, epilepsy, mental retardation, a decrease in IQ, or learning difficulties.

A small number of children who have had a febrile seizure do go on to develop epilepsy, but not because of the febrile seizures. Children who would develop epilepsy anyway will sometimes have their first seizures during fevers. These are usually prolonged, complex seizures.

Nervous system (neurologic) problems and a family history of epilepsy make it more likely that the child will develop epilepsy. The number of febrile seizures is not related to future epilepsy.

About a third of children who have had a febrile seizure will have another one with a fever. Of those who do have a second seizure, about half will have a third seizure. Few children have more than three febrile seizures in their lifetime.

Most children outgrow febrile convulsions by age 5.

Prevention:
Because  febrile convulsion  can be the first sign of illness, it is often not possible to prevent them. A febrile  convulsion does not mean that your child is not getting the proper care.

Occasionally, a health care provider will prescribe diazepam to prevent or treat febrile convulsions that occur more than once. However, no medication is completely effective in preventing febrile convulsions.

You may click to see:
MoonDragon’s Health & Wellness FEVER …

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Resources:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/febrileconvulsions2.shtml
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000980.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Febrile_seizure

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/imagepages/19076.htm

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Infant Fever

A mother holds her baby while it is immunized

Image via Wikipedia

Fevers are fact of life for most children. In most cases they are nothing to worry about, but it is important to monitor the symptoms closely and to seek medical advice if they persist.

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What is a fever?

Fever has been defined as a body temperature elevated to at least 1F above the ‘normal’ of 98.6F (37.0C).

A baby’s temperature normally varies by as much as 2F, depending on the temperature of his surroundings, clothing worn, degree of stress, level of activity or time of day.

What prompts a fever?

In most cases a fever is the body’s reaction to an acute viral or bacterial infection. Raising the temperature helps create an inhospitable environment for viral or bacterial invaders, it also stimulates the production of disease-fighting white blood cells.

Why are babies prone to fevers?

The body’s temperature control system is not well developed in babies.

Infant and childhood fevers can be caused by a number of different factors including:

* Overexertion
* Dehydration
* Mosquito bites
* Bee stings
* Allergic reactions
* Viral or bacteria infections

What are the symptoms?

Typical symptoms of a fever include coughing, aches or pains, an inability to sleep and shivering.

Other symptoms include poor appetite, lethargy and prolonged irritability.

In some cases breathing may be difficult.

What are the treatments?

Dehydration is a risk for infants, and a feverish baby should always be given lots of fluids.

A child with a temperature of less than 102F (38.8C) does not always require immediate medical attention. The child should be observed, and help sought if the symptoms appear to get worse, or the fever does not subside within 24 hours.

A child with a temperature of 102F or higher should be given paracetamol. A doctor or pharmacist should be consulted for a recommended dose.

A doctor’s advice should always be sought for a child whose temperature is 104F (40C) or higher.

Children should not be given aspirin. Several studies link aspirin use in children with Reye’s Syndrome a severe illness that often is fatal.

Are there danger signs?

Certain symptoms, when combined with a fever, warrant an immediate call to the doctor. These include:

* Red spots on the skin, sensitive eyes and runny nose (measles)
* Red, itchy spots (chicken pox)
* Stiffness in the neck or headache (a sign of a more severe infection)

Febrile seizures

Occasionally, a child with a fever will have a seizure. This is called a febrile seizure, and it demands immediate attention from a doctor.

The seizures do not seem to be related to the height of the fever, or to the rapidity with which it rises, but a small number of children seem to be predisposed to attacks.

About 50% of the children who suffer one febrile seizure will go on to have another one. About 33% will have a third one.

While waiting for a doctor to arrive, it is important to follow basic instructions:

* Keep the child upright and make sure they are breathing well
* Stay with the child and talk reassuringly
* Watch for changes in breathing, and make sure that the airways are kept open
* Clear the area to prevent injury
* Do not restrain as this can cause additional injury
* Try placing a soft pillow or blanket under the child’s head
* Loosen clothing to prevent injury and ease discomfort
* If vomiting occurs, turn the head to the side so there is no risk of his choking on inhaled vomit

You may click to learn more about Infant Fever:->Infants Fever

>Fever Quiz

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Sources:BBC NEWS:2nd.June,1999

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