National Reyes Syndrome Foundation UK

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Reye-Like Syndromes

Similar Illnesses which may resemble Reye’s syndrome during early stages

There are also a number of other illnesses which superficially may resemble Reye's syndrome in their early stages. These include septicaemia, meningitis, encephalitis, haemorrhagic shock encephalopathy syndrome and acute liver failure without jaundice.

With wider awareness of the Reye-like disorders, some pointers for them have become clear. Features which may suggest a metabolic disorder rather than Reye's syndrome are:-

  • the patient is a child under 3 years old.
  • a previous history of illness, e.g. vomiting, failure to thrive, encephalopathic episodes, etc.
  • a family history of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome or unexpected and unexplained death in sibs.
  • absence of vomiting and agitation in the early stages.
  • previous history of a similar illness. 

Next review January 2020