Monday, September 15, 2014

Mommy Monday: Attitudes & Periodic Fever Syndrome


Some weeks test your patience more than others.  
Some weeks nothing seems to go as planned.
A couple of weeks ago that was our life.


Bad attitudes from the Farm baby accompanied by learning how to use the word "NO!" made for a rough week.  Not sure if he was going through a growth spurt, teething (which he does constantly I think) or if he had fluid on his ears.  But he was not his normal happy go lucky self.


The Farmboy wasn't either for that matter.  Poor guy battled a fever for 5 days straight.  It appears the fever is Periodic Fever Syndrome (PFS).  Never heard of it?? Don't worry I hadn't either until about a year ago. 

 For 5 months (Aug-Dec) we battled a fever each month.  The fevers would come on suddenly, reach about 104-105 and stay there.  Tylenol did nothing to help...actually would bump the fever up.  Motrin would bring it down to 102 or so but never completely go away.  

The first time it happened we ended up in the ER at the local children's hospital thinking Farmboy was having an appendicitis.  The doctors soon discovered that other than complaining of a belly ache and a high fever there was nothing else going on.  We went to our regular pediatrician again later that week.  Nothing...just a fever.  We were told to treat the fever and ensure he got plenty of fluids.  

Fast forward a month...we had another round but with less severe stomach pains.  This time we called the office, discussed the situation with the doctor and monitored him....the fever lasted 6 days.  

5 weeks later the fever returned with a vengeance.  It quickly spiked at 105 (under the arm)!! We headed for the peds office, blood work, urine test, and examines were done.  We talked with our ped daily for a week and even ended up back in the ER for dehydration.  

That's when she first mentioned  PFS.  She said that as long as we controlled the fever and they weren't disrupting his life we would monitor them and record any fever and symptoms.  That he should grow out of them by around age 10 or so.

  Of course as a mom I went home and researched all I could.  The simplest explanations I found were here.  This wasn't as cut and dry.  There were variations of the PFS, some I knew didn't fit, others I wasn't sure about.  There was the possibly for additional symptoms and higher fevers recurring more often.  I was a nervous wreck.

A month later another fever returned.  The first few days we just had the high fever then it progressed.  Both boys ended up with the flu.  The ped concluded that the Farmbaby had the flu first and with Farmboy's weaken immune system his body couldn't battle both.  More blood work was done.

At this point Farmboy had already missed 10+ days of school, not to mention being sent home at the onset of each.  Like any parent I was worried.  We didn't really know what to do next but our ped continued to reassure us that it wasn't life threatening.  We continued to monitor and record. 

Amazingly we made it through January and February fever free.  We had another episode in March and April...the temperatures were just as high but the duration was shorter... on average only 3 days.  Never did we have any other symptoms but a stomach ache and fever.  

We had a couple of feverish days in June but nothing as severe.  We thought that maybe it was just a fluke.  Maybe he didn't really have PFS he just exhibited similar symptoms.  I talked with other moms who's kids had various forms.  Some of them like clock work...others like Farmboy...no consistent pattern.  August, almost a year to the day, we had another episode.  This time lasting 5 days.  We could manage the fever somewhat, but this time it affected his activity.  He slept for 3 days straight.  Motrin only kept his fever down for a couple of hours.  Now we are back to watching for signs of an impending episode.  

We had a scare last week.   Farmboy started complaining that his stomach hurt, he was irritable and sleepy, and warm.  I checked that poor kids temperature 100 times and it was elevated but not fever status.  Since there was no fever we sent him to school.  I emailed his sweet 1st year teacher to explain and ask her to keep a very close eye on him because the fever spikes quickly...especially after lunch...honestly I am sure I scared her to death.    

He never did run a fever, but all the other signs were there.  I have read that after having a  tonsillectomy this is possible but not sure about before.  For now we continue to watch the Farmboy closely and monitor his temperature often.  

Do you have any experience with PFS??  Share in the comments below.  

Until we meet again...God Bless You & Keep You


Caci