What causes febrile pediatric first seizure?

Updated: Aug 16, 2018
  • Author: Shelley R Waite, MD; Chief Editor: Amy Kao, MD  more...
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Answer

Answer

Febrile seizures are convulsions in infants and children triggered by a fever in the absence of CNS infection. Febrile seizures affect 4–5% of children aged 6 months to 6 years. These occur in association with a high fever, typically above 38.5°C (101.3°F), although some believe the rate of change in body temperature is more provoking than the absolute temperature in febrile seizures. There is often a positive family history of febrile seizures in other family members. A second episode occurs in 33% of children, and only 50% of those have a third episode. Few children, approximately 3–6%, with febrile seizures develop afebrile seizures or epilepsy. Electroencephalography (EEG) and neuroimaging are generally not warranted. [4] Further evaluation may be required for complex febrile seizures, which include seizures that are greater than 15 minutes in duration, have focal onset, or occur multiple times within 24 hours or within a febrile illness.


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