Seizures and Fever (cont.)
Seizures and Fever Treatment
Self-Care at Home
These aspects of home care need to be considered:
- Care of the child during the seizure: During a seizure, only a limited amount of intervention should be undertaken. The main objective is to protect the child’s airway so that breathing is maintained. Protection from other injury is important.
- Remove objects, such as food and pacifiers, from the mouth.
- Place the child on his or her side or abdomen.
- Clear the mouth with a suction bulb (if available) if there is vomiting.
- Perform a jaw thrust or chin lift maneuver if there is noisy or labored breathing.
- Do not try to restrain the child or try to stop seizure movements.
- Do not force anything into the child's mouth. Don't try to hold the tongue. (It is not necessary to try to prevent the tongue from being swallowed.)
- Control of the fever: Because the seizure is being caused by fever, measures should be taken to lower the body temperature.
- Remove clothing.
- Apply cool washcloths to the face and neck.
- Sponge the rest of the body with cool water (do not immerse a seizing child in the bathtub).
- Give medication to lower the fever (acetaminophen suppositories in the rectum, if available). Oral medications should not be given until the child is awake.
- Consider the cause of the fever: This is probably best left up to the doctor's medical evaluation.
Scott H Plantz, MD, FAAEM
Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD
Thomas Rebbecchi, MD, FAAEM
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