Roseola

  • Medical Author:
    John Mersch, MD, FAAP

    Dr. Mersch received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego, and prior to entering the University Of Southern California School Of Medicine, was a graduate student (attaining PhD candidate status) in Experimental Pathology at USC. He attended internship and residency at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

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What is the treatment for the fever of roseola?

If the fever is not causing the child to be uncomfortable, the fever need not be treated. It is not necessary to awaken the child to treat a fever unless instructed to do so by a health-care professional.

If someone wants to treat the fever, acetaminophen (Tylenol and others) can be used. The dosage interval is every four hours. Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, and others) may be used in lieu of acetaminophen on an every six-hour basis. Both families of medication are equally effective in lowering a child's fever. There is no medical benefit alternating acetaminophen with ibuprofen. Aspirin should never be used for fever in children or adolescents.

A child with a fever should be kept comfortable and not be overdressed. Overdressing can cause the temperature to go higher. Bathing with tepid water (85 F or 29.5 C) may help bring down a fever by 1 to 1.5 degrees. If a child develops shivering during the bath, the temperature of the bath water should be raised. Never sponge a child (or an adult) with alcohol; the alcohol fumes may be inhaled, causing many problems.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/27/2016

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