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DrOAB, Board Certified Pediatrician
Category: Pediatrics
Satisfied Customers: 1032
Experience:  In practice since 2000.
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My six month old baby has 101.6 fever. Is this too high?

Customer Question

My 6 month old has a fever of 101.6. Is that too high?

Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Pediatrics
Expert:  DrOAB replied 8 years ago.


At age 6 months, a fever of 101.6 degrees Fahrenheit is not a high fever.

Fever is actually a protective mechanism by which the body makes itself unsuitable for the presence of infection. There is only concern for permanent injury by the fever itself if it rises to 107 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, which is rare due to the brain's ability to regulate temperature, usually keeping fevers below 106 degrees Fahrenheit.

As a pediatrician (and assuming no other serious symptoms), I would be a little more concerned if the fever were in the 102-104 degree range (moderate fever, consider evaluation) and much more concerned for a fever above 104 degrees (high fever, must evaluate), especially if the fever was over 105 degrees or lasted beyond 48-72 hours (more concern for bacterial infection).

Prompt evaluation by the child's physician or in an ER is advised if you note any of the following: temperature above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit / 38 degrees Celsius (definition of fever) if below age 4 months or beyond 48-72 hours or at/above 104-105 degrees Fahrenheit / 40-40.5 degrees Celsius, intolerable pain, discolored (e.g., yellow-green) phlegm-productive cough, breathing more than 50 times per minute based on counting chest rises, coarse breath sounds or increased work of breathing (e.g., nostril flaring or retractions, the later being deep sinking below the ribcage or at the midline neck area just above the collar bones), paleness or blueness to the skin, confusion, inconsolable irritability, or hard-to-rouse lethargy, marked neck stiffness, blood (bright red, maroon, or black) or bile (light to dark green) in the vomit, blood (bright red or tarry black) or mucus (copious or bloody) in the bowel movements, abdominal bloating with rigidity or tenderness to pressure, diarrhea that lasts beyond 7 days, inability to take or hold down even one-half teaspoon sips of liquid, failure to urinate at least once every eight hours. Dry or sticky (not moist and slick) inner cheek lining when a clean finger is swiped against it, sunken eyes or failure to produce tears while crying.