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Health & Fitness

FEBRILE SEIZURES AND VACCINATION

Parents vaccinating their children now need not be worried about febrile seizure affecting their children. A recent study in the University of Sydney found that febrile seizures after vaccination are rare and not serious. In fact they are no different to febrile seizures due to other causes, such as from a virus. These seizures are short-lived and resolve themselves, hence, they don’t require on-going treatment.

Approximately 1 in 30 children under six years of age are most commonly affected by Febrile Seizures. They experience a rise in body temperature that is a result of a febrile viral illness such as influenza.

The study was the first prospective study to directly compare the differences in severity and outcomes between febrile seizures following vaccination to other febrile seizures. It was published in Paediatrics.

Dr. Lucy Deng, the lead author and PhD student from University of Sydney and the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) said, “Febrile seizures are not known to cause long-lasting effects, but they are understandably frightening to parents and carers.”

“In our study of 1022 children with their first febrile seizure, we found no difference between febrile seizures following vaccination and other febrile seizures with regard to the length of the seizure, the risk of having another febrile seizure in the first 24 hours, the length of hospital stay, or the need for seizure medication on discharge.

Senior author Associate Professor Nicholas Wood from University of Sydney and NCIRS said: “We hope this gives parents the confidence to continue vaccinating their children, especially now at a time when there have been cases of both measles and whooping cough and we prepare to enter into the flu season.

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