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Fever in Children (cont.)

Medical Treatment

Your doctor may or may not be able to tell you the exact cause of your child's fever.

  • Viral infections of the respiratory system are the most common cause of fever. Antibiotics do not cure or help with viral infections and increase the chance of drug reactions and potentially other problems.


    • If your doctor diagnoses a bacterial infection, your child will be started on antibiotics.


      • Urinary tract infections, ear infections, throat infections, sinus infections, skin infections, gastrointestinal infections, and pneumonia may be treated with antibiotics at home.


      • Your child may receive oral antibiotics, a shot, or both.

    • Children suspected to have bacterial meningitis are always admitted to the hospital.

  • Additionally, your doctor may recommend giving acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) for fever.


  • Dehydration may be treated by giving oral fluids or intravenous (IV) fluids.


    • If a child is vomiting, a drug to control nausea may be given by injection or by rectal suppository.


    • After a period of time, oral fluids will be attempted.

  • If your child's condition improves after reducing the fever, treating dehydration, and serious bacterial infections have been ruled out, the doctor will, more than likely, discharge your child from the emergency clinic for further care and monitoring at home.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

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Fever in Children - Treatment

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Fever in the Young Infant »

This article addresses the often-challenging task of diagnosing and treating febrile illnesses in infants younger than 60 days and discusses appropriate testing, treatment, and disposition of these patients.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


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