Seizure in Children Without Fever or Known Seizure Disorder: Care Instructions

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Your Care Instructions

A child's brain

A seizure is a brief, abnormal change in the brain's electrical activity. Seizures can cause a range of problems. Not all seizures cause shaking (convulsions). During some types, your child may stare into space. He or she may look normal but may not seem to hear you.

Many things can cause seizures. When a seizure is not caused by a fever, the cause could be very low blood sugar. Or the cause could be a head injury from a bad fall. A seizure also can be a sign of epilepsy. It can cause seizures that may come back now and then. Other things, such as abnormal heart rhythms or anxiety, can cause symptoms that look like seizures.

One seizure does not mean that your child has a serious health problem. But you should watch for more seizures. Call your doctor or nurse call line if any occur. The doctor may need to do more tests and treatment.

The doctor has checked your child carefully, but problems can develop later. If you notice any problems or new symptoms, get medical treatment right away.

Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.

How can you care for your child at home?

  • The doctor may give your child medicine that prevents seizures. Have your child take medicines exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor or nurse call line if you think your child is having a problem with his or her medicine. You will get more details on the specific medicines your doctor prescribes.
  • If your child has another seizure, note the date and time of day that the seizure occurred. Also write down any details about what happened before and during the seizure. Include what your child ate before the seizure or what he or she was doing.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • Your child has another seizure during the same illness.
  • Your child has new symptoms. These may include weakness or numbness in any part of the body.

Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • Your child's fever does not come down with acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).
  • Your child is not acting normally after the seizure.

Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:

  • Your child does not get better as expected.

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Current as of: May 27, 2016