Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Febrile Seizure Overview

What is a febrile seizure?
A person with a seizure has a sudden increase in electrical activity in the brain. A child with a febrile seizure has a seizure that occurs during a fever. Febrile seizures resolve quickly and do not damage the brain. The cause of febrile seizure is not known. Febrile seizures occur in children between 2 months and 5 years old.

What are the symptoms of a febrile seizure?
Symptoms of a febrile seizure include sudden stiffness of the arms, legs and back, difficulty breathing, teeth clenching, eyes rolls back, bladder incontinence, and unconsciousness. Symptoms that may occur after a febrile seizure include lethargy, confusion, and excessive sleepiness.

How does the doctor treat a febrile seizure?
Treatment for a febrile seizure includes acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for fever control. Some may require treatment with an anticonvulsant such as diazepam.

Continue to Febrile Seizure Incidence

Last Updated: Feb 8, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Febrile Seizure References
  1. Camfield P, Camfield C. Epileptic syndromes in childhood: clinical features, outcomes, and treatment. Epilepsia. 2002;43 Suppl 3:27-32. [12060004]
  2. Shinnar S, Glauser TA. Febrile seizures. J Child Neurol. 2002 Jan;17 Suppl 1:S44-52. [11918463]
  3. Waruiru C, Appleton R. Febrile seizures: an update. Arch Dis Child. 2004 Aug;89(8):751-6. [15269077]
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