Treating a Persistent Low Grade Fever in a Child

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Finding the cause of of a low grade fever in a child is important.

I am constanly amazed at the way some doctors care or don't care for their patients. Yesterday, I had a call from a father saying his little child had had a low grade fever for six days. The pediatrician said just to give the child Tylenol and didn't suggest seeing the child or having any tests done. I was appalled. I told the father that certainly the child should have been examined by the doctor and a urine should be checked and a urine culture done. Little girls easily get urinary infections if they don't clean themselves well when they go to the bathroom. I also said a blood count should  be done. If the child showed no signs of illness, I would want to see her at least every two days, plus have a daily telephone report. If she was not getting well and the above tests were negative, I would want a chest X-ray. Silent pneumonias can occur with few respiratory symptoms. If the low grade fever persisted, I would think of more serious problems, but I would first look for a common problem, particularly if a bad flu bug is going around.

Ear infections are very common in little children and may not be painful. If a child has impacted wax in the ear canal and the doctor does not clean out the wax or doesn't know how, as seems to be more and more the case these days, then the ear infection will be missed and could lead to mastoiditis and even meningitis. I also suggested to this father that they would be wise to change doctors if no answer was found for the fever.

Article last time updated on 27.02.2017.

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Medicine, Pediatrics
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