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Child having cough, fever, headache and loss of appetite. What could be causing this?

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Pediatrician, Neonatology
Practicing since : 1970
Answered : 891 Questions
My 3 year old had a cold over a month ago...mostly her sinuses, fever for a few days. The symptoms went away after a few days, but she developed a cough and a fever a week later. I took her to the doctor then and was told there was no sign of infection. Her cough, mostly in the morning and at night is now producing more phlegm. A few nights ago, she woke up in the middle of the night because she had thrown up and had a fever (100.6) and complained of a headache. When she woke up the next morning she seemed better and has acted pretty normally during the day. There is some lack of appetite. Since that night, she has been waking up at night with a low fever, sweaty, coughing. But again, no fever during the day and acts normal for the most part. Any idea what could cause this? Thank you. XXXXXXX
Posted Sat, 17 Nov 2012 in Child Health
Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 16 minutes later
Welcome to health care magic!
Your daughter developed probably a post nasal drip and nasal block after the sinusitis and viral infection.
With this child has nasal secretions trickling down in the back of throat when sleeping or lying down.
This leads to cough at night and early mornings and sometimes vomiting in the morning of mucus.
Use of anti histamine syrup and nasal decongestant will help to treat this.
As viral infections are not amenable to treatment with antibiotics, this whole episode which you described takes time!
Do not worry!
She will improve.
Steam inhalations also will help for this.
All the best
God bless
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Child having cough, fever, headache and loss of appetite. What could be causing this? 36 minutes later
Thank you. Should we have any concern about the fever, and do you know how long do these symptoms normally persist? Should we give her Tylenol before bedtime to hopefully keep the fever down while she is sleeping? It is getting quite exhausting. For us. She seems to be handling it very well.
Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 24 minutes later
Hi again,
I can very well understand your concern!
Kids are gifted with this" no worry attitude"!
They are like this because they have parents to take care of them!!!( a bit of philosophy away from our main subject!!)
She will take about a week to get over this.
You can definitely give tylenol at night before sleep.
However if the fever does not subside by a week or continues more than 100 deg F,you may have to show her to the pediatrician again to decide whether a course of antibiotic will be needed.
Take care
Dr Uma
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Child having cough, fever, headache and loss of appetite. What could be causing this? 21 hours later
I appreciate your help, however, I took my daughter to her pediatrician yesterday and it turns out she has a sinus infection and is now taking antibiotics. He symptoms got progressively worse about an hour before I took her in. In fact, her temp was the highest it has been when we got to the office. I realize that without evaluating her in person, you cannot give a concrete diagnosis, but if I had taken your advice, I'm afraid of how much worse she would have gotten without an antibiotic. Would I be eligible for a refund based on this information?

from HealthCare Magic website:

•100% refundable if you are not satisfied with the answer from the Doctor
Answered by Dr. Uma Rajah Ananth 32 minutes later
If it was sinusitis from the beginning, she should have had fever in the day time also as it happened now.
In children infections progress very rapidly and the scenario changes fast!
As you have rightly pointed out without examining the child, I can only deduce from the way you describe the symptoms !you also mentioned that your doctor ruled out infection earlier!
About asking for refund it is up to you . No problem.
All the best
Dr Uma
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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