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What causes excessive drooling while on treatment for fever?

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Posted on Sat, 21 May 2016
Question: Hello,

Yesterday morning, my 18th month old daughter presented with a clear runny nose and a cough. Later in the evening, she developed a fever of 103. I gave her Tylenol, which brought it down to about 99.

She woke several times in the night last night coughing and crying. Her fever persisted, so I treated her with Tylenol about ever 4-6 hours. This morning, I took her to our pediatrician's urgent care office. We saw a nurse practitioner, who took one look inside her ears and said she had an ear infection in her left ear. She prescribed amoxicillin, which we began this morning. However, since this morning, she seems to have gotten worse. My main concern now is she started drooling very excessively. Her nose is still running clear mucus, and she is still coughing. Her fever only goes down to about 100 after giving Tylenol and Motrin. The drooling is so bad now, though, that she is completely drenching the front of her shirt. I've had to change it every hour or so. She has never really been a drooler (even when teething), so this is the most drool I've ever seen! She also acts like her throat is sore, but the nurse that examined her didn't even look inside her mouth. Could all these symptoms (the drooling especially) just be caused by the ear infection, or should I be concerned that it could be something more serious? I'm planning on taking her to see our pediatrician on Monday, but I'm worried about waiting that long. Thank you in advance.
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Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James (24 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
it is possible that a throat infection is present

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

The drooling does suggest that she may have sore throat and is finding it difficult to swallow her saliva.

It is not likely related to the ear infection itself but the entire infection would affect different aspects of the respiratory tract.

Most infectious sore throats are due to viral infection but if it is bacterial then the same amoxicillin that was given for the ear, should help treat the throat, if it is bacterial.
There are some instances where bacteria can be resistant/non responsive to certain bacteria but many children with bacterial cough/cold symptoms are given amoxicillin.

You can continue the tylenol and/or motrin to help with fever control and pain. It can take a few days for the fever to stay down on its own.
Make sure she is getting enough for her weight, if not getting enough, will not be as effective.
Cool or cold liquids may also help to dull the pain in her throat.

If you remain concerned or her symptoms worsen, then you may consider having her seen before Monday but there is no worsening then you can hold till the appointment.

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Michelle Gibson James

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2001

Answered : 16811 Questions

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What causes excessive drooling while on treatment for fever?

Brief Answer: it is possible that a throat infection is present Detailed Answer: HI, thanks for using healthcare magic The drooling does suggest that she may have sore throat and is finding it difficult to swallow her saliva. It is not likely related to the ear infection itself but the entire infection would affect different aspects of the respiratory tract. Most infectious sore throats are due to viral infection but if it is bacterial then the same amoxicillin that was given for the ear, should help treat the throat, if it is bacterial. There are some instances where bacteria can be resistant/non responsive to certain bacteria but many children with bacterial cough/cold symptoms are given amoxicillin. You can continue the tylenol and/or motrin to help with fever control and pain. It can take a few days for the fever to stay down on its own. Make sure she is getting enough for her weight, if not getting enough, will not be as effective. Cool or cold liquids may also help to dull the pain in her throat. If you remain concerned or her symptoms worsen, then you may consider having her seen before Monday but there is no worsening then you can hold till the appointment. I hope this helps, feel free to ask any other questions