Most febrile seizures occur in the first few hours of a fever, during the initial rise in body temperature.
Giving your child medications
Giving your child infants' or children's acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) at the beginning of fever may make your child more comfortable, but it won't prevent a seizure.
Use caution when giving aspirin to children or teenagers. Though aspirin is approved for use in children older than age 3, children and teenagers recovering from chickenpox or flu-like symptoms should never take aspirin. This is because aspirin has been linked to Reye's syndrome, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition, in such children.
Prescription prevention medications
Rarely, prescription anticonvulsant medications are used to try to prevent febrile seizures. However, these medications can have serious side effects that may outweigh any possible benefit.
Oral diazepam (Valium), lorazepam intensol, clonazepam (Klonopin) or rectal diazepam (Diastat) may be prescribed for children who are prone to febrile seizures. These medications are typically used to treat seizures that last longer than 10 minutes or if the child has more than one seizure within 24 hours. They are not typically used to prevent febrile seizures.
Dec. 05, 2014
- Febrile seizures fact sheet. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/febrile_seizures/detail_febrile_seizures.htm. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Millichap JG, et al. Clinical features and evaluation of febrile seizures. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Millichap JG, et al. Treatment and prognosis of febrile seizures. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.
- Chung S. Febrile seizures. Korean Journal of Pediatrics. 2014;57:384.
- Febrile seizures: Clinical practice guideline for the long-term management of the child with simple febrile seizures. American Academy of Pediatrics. http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/121/6/1281.full.html. Accessed Nov. 3, 2014.