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Antipyretics Not Found to Stop Recurrent Febrile Seizures

Last Updated: September 09, 2009.

Antipyretic agents cannot prevent the recurrence of febrile seizures, although they can lower temperature in non-seizure febrile episodes, according to a study in the September issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Antipyretic agents cannot prevent the recurrence of febrile seizures, although they can lower temperature in non-seizure febrile episodes, according to a study in the September issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

Teemu Strengell, M.D., of the University of Oulu in Finland, and colleagues conducted a study of 231 children who were observed for two years after their first febrile seizure. Any subsequent febrile episode was treated with either rectal diclofenac or placebo, followed by oral ibuprofen, acetaminophen or placebo eight hours later.

The cohort experienced 851 febrile episodes, including 89 febrile seizures, which occurred in 54 (23.4 percent) of the children, and the rate of recurrence was similar regardless of the treatment regimen, the investigators discovered. However, antipyretics did lower the temperature of children experiencing a febrile event without febrile seizure.

"Because antipyretic agents are effective during a febrile episode that does not lead to a seizure, their use should not differ between patients with and without previous febrile seizures," the authors write. "Parents should be informed about the inefficacy of antipyretic agents during a febrile episode that leads to a febrile seizure and about the benign nature of febrile seizures themselves."

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