National Reyes Syndrome Foundation UK

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Information for Parents, Young Adults and General Public

What can I do if my child has a fever and I cannot use aspirin?

Fever is a normal response to infection. It may actually help your child to fight off viral Illness. The NHS advise as an aid to preventing Reye's syndrome that if your child or teenager has 'flu' (influenza) or other viral infections, paracetamol or ibuprofen  can be used  to reduce their fever and relieve pain.  However, Ibuprofen is not recommended for those with a history of asthma, kidney disease or liver disease. Always read carefully the directions on the packet, bottle or the patient information leaflet.

Check with your GP or pharmacist if you are unsure.

There is no need to undress your child or sponge them down with tepid water.

Research shows that neither actually helps reduce fever.  Avoid bundling them up in too many clothes or bedclothes.

Keep the room at moderate temperature and encourage the child to drink liquids such as water and non fizzy soft drinks.

If the fever does not respond to any of these measures, obtain advice urgently from your doctor.  For further information consult the NHS Choices website – see Resources and Reports on this page and the local link "Advice to parents".

Children under 12 months of age who have fever should NOT BE TREATED WITHOUT MEDICAL ADVICE.


Next review December 2019