8 doctors weighed in:

Can fevers cause brain trauma and damage?

8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pamela Lindor
Pediatrics
2 doctors agree

In brief: No

Fever is part of the immune system, and helps your child fight off infection.
Children tolerate even high fevers very well. There is no damage to your child from the fever itself. Fever is a sign that there is illness, so your doctor will evaluate to find out what is causing the fever.

In brief: No

Fever is part of the immune system, and helps your child fight off infection.
Children tolerate even high fevers very well. There is no damage to your child from the fever itself. Fever is a sign that there is illness, so your doctor will evaluate to find out what is causing the fever.
Dr. Pamela Lindor
Dr. Pamela Lindor
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2 doctors agree

In brief: No

The typical fevers of childhood illnesses do not cause brain trauma and damage.
If the fever is caused by an infection of the brain (meningitis or encephalitis), the infection can cause damage but not the fever. Fevers from heat stroke (in the 107 degree range or more) may cause brain damage but these are not typical fevers of childhood. They result from exposure to extreme heat.

In brief: No

The typical fevers of childhood illnesses do not cause brain trauma and damage.
If the fever is caused by an infection of the brain (meningitis or encephalitis), the infection can cause damage but not the fever. Fevers from heat stroke (in the 107 degree range or more) may cause brain damage but these are not typical fevers of childhood. They result from exposure to extreme heat.
Dr. Sharon Gilliland
Dr. Sharon Gilliland
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Dr. Robert Kwok
Pediatrics
1 doctor agrees

In brief: No

A healthy child who gets fever will not get brain damage from the fever. If a child gets a severe illness, such as an infection in the brain, the child may develop brain damage, but that damage was not caused by the fever. Fever is a sign that tells parents to observe the child, and then contact a doctor if any unusual symptoms begin; or contact a doctor right away if the child is <3 months old.

In brief: No

A healthy child who gets fever will not get brain damage from the fever. If a child gets a severe illness, such as an infection in the brain, the child may develop brain damage, but that damage was not caused by the fever. Fever is a sign that tells parents to observe the child, and then contact a doctor if any unusual symptoms begin; or contact a doctor right away if the child is <3 months old.
Dr. Robert Kwok
Dr. Robert Kwok
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Dr. Marcus Degraw
Pediatrics

In brief: No

No only at very high levels, above 105 degrees, and for prolonged periods of time.
Think babies being left in a car on a 90 degree day type scenario. The fevers typical obtained through infection and inflammation (100-104) are not going to cause brain damage or trauma.

In brief: No

No only at very high levels, above 105 degrees, and for prolonged periods of time.
Think babies being left in a car on a 90 degree day type scenario. The fevers typical obtained through infection and inflammation (100-104) are not going to cause brain damage or trauma.
Dr. Marcus Degraw
Dr. Marcus Degraw
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