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Prescrire Int. 2002 Feb;11(57):18-20.

Simple febrile convulsions in children: explain and reassure the parents.

[No authors listed]

Abstract

(1) Simple febrile convulsions (brief and generalised) in children carry a high risk of recurrence during new febrile episodes (30-50%), especially while the child is under the age of 3 years. These relapses are rarely severe and only occur during a minority of febrile episodes. Later onset of epilepsy is rare. (2) Long term treatment with phenobarbital and valproic acid reduce the risk of relapse but carry a risk of bothersome or severe adverse effects. These treatments are rarely warranted in this setting. (3) Oral diazepam administration to a febrile child has moderate preventive efficacy, which is further limited by the difficulty of timing the treatment correctly. Oral diazepam has frequent but generally mild adverse effects. (4) Antipyretics are not very effective at preventing febrile convulsions but can make the child more comfortable. (5) Parents are often upset when they first see their child have a febrile convulsion. It is important to take the time to reassure them.

PMID:
11985372
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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