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Does high fever during first or second trimester of pregnancy lead to complications in fetus?

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Practicing since : 2008
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I got a high fever of 103.4 for 4 hours during my ovulation. I went to the ER and my blood, urine and influenza nose test were clean and negative. 2.5 weeks later, I took a pregnancy test today and it says that I am 2-3 weeks pregnant. I am curious if the high fever affected the embryo and am worried. Of course I will also consult with my OBGYN but I would like to get an expert opinion now. Thanks!
Posted Sat, 8 Feb 2014 in Pregnancy
Answered by Dr. Anjana Rao Kavoor 1 hour later
Brief Answer: Least likely to affect pregnancy in your situation Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX, Thanks for sending in your query. A high fever for at least 24 hours duration during the first or second trimester of pregnancy (including time of implantation) is potentially harmful but may not be seen in every woman. Research has been done on animals under laboratory conditions and conclusions have been drawn. If you report fever for just 4 hours during your ovulation then there is least risk in any harmful effects on your pregnancy. The fever plays an important role after fertilization has occurred and the embryo has formed. Please do not worry and be in touch with your doctor regularly. Wishing you good health. Hope this answers your query. Do write back if you have any doubts. Dr.A.Rao Kavoor
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Does high fever during first or second trimester of pregnancy lead to complications in fetus? 7 hours later
Here is a bit more detail: During the last two weeks of December, I was traveling internationally and caught UTI from a spa (also did steam and sauna) in Switzerland. I was on antibiotics for 10 days. As soon as I finished my antibiotics, I was on an international flight home on Dec. 30. On Dec. 31, I worked out and was much more sore than normal--muscle aches. I was ovulating in the window of Dec. 31 and XXXXXXX 1, and I think I had a fever during the course of the Dec. 31 night, and then it peaked to 103.4 on XXXXXXX 1. By midday, it had gone away on XXXXXXX 1. I'm reading a lot online that says it's normal to have a raise in basal body temperature to 99, but I am just wondering if the antibiotics or traveling contributed to my fever of 103.4 and if that damaged the egg :*( I know it's XXXXXXX to have a fever in the first trimester, but considering the fever was during my peak ovulation I wonder if that was when the sperm attached to the egg? Was it my body trying to save the egg by spiking my progesterone. I feel fine now...but am still worried. Please advise, it will be a few days before I see my OBGYN. Thanks, Betty
Answered by Dr. Anjana Rao Kavoor 9 hours later
Brief Answer: Please find detailed answer below Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX, Thanks for writing back with an update. I would like to clarify certain points mentioned in your reply above. 1. If you had an UTI and have taken 10 days antibiotics which got over on 30 Dec and your urinary problems have disappeared then it is unlikely that you had any serious infection in your body on Dec 31 resulting in a fever. 2. The fever was most likely a transient rise in temperature and a reaction to your physical stress encountered during travel and a work out leading to muscle aches. Antibiotics will not cause temperature spike after 10 days as in your situation. 3. The basal body temperature is measured just before getting out of bed in the morning. During ovulation it can rise by 1 degree F and the rise can remain until periods or through the first trimester should you be pregnant. 4. The rise in temperature up to 99 F is attributed to increased progesterone levels and the body in preparation to maintain a pregnancy. 5. As animal experiments have shown a continuous fever over 101 F for at least 24 hours might affect an embryo, you may be rest assured that this has not happened with you. 6. Please drink enough water and fluids and take precautions while using public washrooms to prevent another UTI during pregnancy. Wishing you good health. Hope this answers your query. Do write back if you have any doubts. Dr.A.Rao Kavoor
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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