question-icon

What causes persistent cough and fever in children?

default
Posted on Mon, 25 May 2015
Question: Grandson 11 y/o has relentless cough, temp 103 on Monday 102 Tuesday 101.4 Wednesday 102.4 now
not congested no drainage no pain in neck or elsewhere, no sore throat, ears ok. Had tonsils out as baby.
Doc 2 days ago said to wait and see. Temp just will not go away. He was in Philippines in January, hope its not malaria. No jaundice, a little diarrhea today has been taking cough med with Tylenol. Started having fever
last Saturday . His Medicaid Dr is out of town should he go to ER or wait. Thanks
doctor
Answered by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Jain (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
I would like to get him evaluated by a physician

Detailed Answer:
Hello

Thanks for the query

The most common cause of fever and cough in this age is viral infection.Presence of loose stool also is suggestive of viral infection as involvement of both respiratory and GI system is more commonly seen in viral infection.The fever in viral infection usually starts decreasing in severity and frequency after 72 hours.The fever may persist for another 24 to 48 hours in few cases,but in that case evaluation should be done to rule out the bacterial infection.
In malaria the pattern of fever is intermittent once or twice a day with chills and rigor.Cough is more common in viral infection or sore throat and usually not seen in malaria.So chance of malaria is less common.
As you said that the temperature has gone up after 48 hours it is slightly unusual.
I would suggest you to continue robitussin(guaphanesine) and tylenol.
Give plenty of fluid to maintain the hydration.
If there is no respiratory distress and the child's activity is fair,accepting feed well;you can wait for another 24 hour.
But if he is lethargic/irritable,poor oral acceptance,the frequency of stool increases,fever is persistent or any respiratory distress is there then I would suggest you to take him to ER for evaluation.
I shall be glad to answer if you have any more query.
Wish your child speedy recovery.
Regards
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
doctor
Answered by
Dr.
Dr. Pradeep Kumar Jain

Pediatrician, Cardiology

Practicing since :2006

Answered : 2063 Questions

premium_optimized

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
What causes persistent cough and fever in children?

Brief Answer: I would like to get him evaluated by a physician Detailed Answer: Hello Thanks for the query The most common cause of fever and cough in this age is viral infection.Presence of loose stool also is suggestive of viral infection as involvement of both respiratory and GI system is more commonly seen in viral infection.The fever in viral infection usually starts decreasing in severity and frequency after 72 hours.The fever may persist for another 24 to 48 hours in few cases,but in that case evaluation should be done to rule out the bacterial infection. In malaria the pattern of fever is intermittent once or twice a day with chills and rigor.Cough is more common in viral infection or sore throat and usually not seen in malaria.So chance of malaria is less common. As you said that the temperature has gone up after 48 hours it is slightly unusual. I would suggest you to continue robitussin(guaphanesine) and tylenol. Give plenty of fluid to maintain the hydration. If there is no respiratory distress and the child's activity is fair,accepting feed well;you can wait for another 24 hour. But if he is lethargic/irritable,poor oral acceptance,the frequency of stool increases,fever is persistent or any respiratory distress is there then I would suggest you to take him to ER for evaluation. I shall be glad to answer if you have any more query. Wish your child speedy recovery. Regards