A febrile seizure, also known as a fever fit or febrile convulsion, is a convulsion associated with a significant rise in body temperature. They most commonly occur in children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years of age. They are more common in boys than girls.
Yesterday at 10 a.m. , I had a panic attack when my youngest daughter, Husna had a febrile seizure. I didn't realize that she had a fever until she lost her conscious, the eyes rolled up, her face was so pale, the whole body turned blue and she didn't really breathe! The attack lasted about few seconds. My helper in kindy helped me to carry Husna to the car and one of the teachers offered to send me to the nearest clinic or hospital. All I could think of was to call my husband and told him what had happened. Of course he also asked me to bring Husna quickly to an emergency room in the nearest hospital. We decided to go to the nearest government clinic where they have the emergency room.
In the emergency room, I asked a nurse to have a look at Husna and she called the doctor to check on Husna. The first thing that they said was, "This is a case of febrile seizure". The nurse took the temperature and it was 39.5! Then, the doctor put a blanket on her before asking me few questions. She asked how long did the seizure happened, whether she had the rolled eyes, bluish lips, pale face and foam from her mouth. After I confirmed all of the symptoms, she concluded that Husna had febrile seizure of clonic phase. So, the next thing that they did was to insert a paracetamol tablet in her rectum. The doctor also checked on the oxygen level and sugar level. Everything was normal and they asked me to sponge Husna on the body to reduce the temperature. We had to wait for the ambulance as Husna still need to be taken to a hospital for further check up. My hubby managed to arrive few minutes before Husna and I were taken to UMMC by the ambulance.
Inside the ambulance, I was bit dizzy as there was no air-conditioner plus all windows was closed. It was an old ambulance and the driver took the federal highway route at 11 a.m. where there were so many cars at that time. So, he had to honk a lot cars to give him the way.
Once we arrived in the Pediatric Emergency in UMMC, they did the normal check up of Husna' weight, blood pressure and took some blood samples. It was an agony waiting for the result of the blood test. Luckily Husna was sleeping as she was exhausted after the seizure. When the doctor on duty called us in for the consultation, she told us that all result show that she's fine except for the high fever that caused the seizure. She didn't need to be admitted unless we insisted for an overnight observation. We decided to take care of her at home first and promised the doctor if the temperature rise up, we'll bring her back to the hospital.
I've learned some valuable lessons from the panic episode. I'm sharing this info to all parents who have children between 6 months to 6 years old.
During the seizure, leave your child on the floor.
- You may want to slide a blanket under the child if the floor is hard.
- Move the child only if in a dangerous location.
- Remove objects that may cause injury.
- Loosen any tight clothing, especially around the neck. If possible, open or remove clothes from the waist up.
- If the child vomits, or if saliva and mucus build up in the mouth, turn the child to the side or on the stomach. This is also important if it looks like the tongue is getting in the way of breathing.
- Insert an acetaminophen suppository (if you have some) into the child's rectum.
- Do NOT try to give anything by mouth.
- Apply cool washcloths to the forehead and neck. Sponge the rest of the body with lukewarm (not cold) water. Cold water or alcohol may make the fever worse.
- After the seizure is over and your child is awake, give the normal dose of ibuprofen or acetaminophen.