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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes fever and headache along with neck pain in a child?

hi, my 4 year old has had a fever and headache for a couple of days now, Tylenol seems to help for a few hours but then it comes back. He is also complaining of his neck and back of head hurting. He is up to date on his vaccinations so does that mean that he has definitely had a Meningitis vaccine? Is it possible to still get it if he has had the vaccine? Or is there anything else that could be causing this?
Fri, 8 Jun 2018
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Pediatrician 's  Response
Hello and Welcome to "Ask A Doctor" service. I have reviewed your query and here is my advice.
There is more than one cause of bacterial meningitis. The routine well-child vaccines that he should have received by four years of age will protect him against some of them. If he is an otherwise healthy child, there is another vaccine that he is too young to have been given. It is called the meningococcal vaccine given in two doses- one at age 11-12yrs and the second half at 15-16yrs old.
Additionally, there are many viruses that can cause viral meningitis.
At this point we don't even know if he has meningitis. But since meningitis is a very serious illness and he is showing signs of meningitis, you MUST take your son for medical evaluation and treatment immediately.
Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.
Arnold Zedd, MD, FAAP
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