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Fever Limits?
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Fever Limits?

I have a bunch of questions about fevers:

1) What is the highest fever someone can have before suffering severe brain damage?

2) Is a fever of 105 degrees life-threatening?

3) When should somebody seek medical help for a fever?

4) Has anybody survived a fever of 109 degrees?
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1. From what I've read, 107 is when brain damage begins.

2. No, but it should be checked out because it could be a serious infection (such as pneumonia).  Make sure if you have a fever of 105 you are doing things to try and bring it down such as a cool cloth and alternating Tylenol and Advil.  If the fever does not reduce you need to see the doctor.

3. Typically 104 and higher or for any fever that lasts more than 3 days, especially if it is higher.

4. It's not likely.  Starting at 105.8 your proteins and enzymes begin to denature, making them useless.  The body needs these proteins and enzymes to survive.  If a person were to survive, I'd imagine the fever would have to be very short-lived.   It is unlikely that the body would elevate a temperature over 105 or so, except in the case of heat stroke and fire, things of that nature.
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1. From what I've read, 107 is when brain damage begins.

2. No, but it should be checked out because it could be a serious infection (such as pneumonia).  Make sure if you have a fever of 105 you are doing things to try and bring it down such as a cool cloth and alternating Tylenol and Advil.  If the fever does not reduce you need to see the doctor.

3. Typically 104 and higher or for any fever that lasts more than 3 days, especially if it is higher.

4. It's not likely.  Starting at 105.8 your proteins and enzymes begin to denature, making them useless.  The body needs these proteins and enzymes to survive.  If a person were to survive, I'd imagine the fever would have to be very short-lived.   It is unlikely that the body would elevate a temperature over 105 or so, except in the case of heat stroke and fire, things of that nature.
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Thanks! This was very helpful. :D
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I can only answer 1 and 4 for u...

1. a fever of 108 is when brain damage can commence.

4. I can say yes... I know of one person that has survived a fever of 109..... ME. This is from personal experience. I was sick for a couple of weeks. Day 1 I had a fever the lasted almost all day. Not sure how high it was because I had know thermometer. Day 2 and 3 I had no fever and just remained sick in bed. Day 4 the fever came back really strong and along with it came an excruciating pain in my middle back on the left side. There was only one position I could lay in. I would prop all the pillows and would have to have my left side elevated about 6 inches off the bed so I was slightly twisted. It was the only position I felt no pain if I moved my left side higher or lower just it would hurt really bad. And there was absolutely not other position I could lay, not on my stomach face down or on my right side which is how I normally like ti sleep, because everything I tried the pain was extreme. I thought and hoped the pain would soon go away but both the fever and the pain continued for the following three days. I didn't get very much sleep because I would doze off and as I would fall asleep my body would move and the pain was there as intense as always and it would wake me up. I couldn't take it anymore and so by the end if The third day with the fever and pain I took off to the emergency room. Luckily for me it was not so busy and were able to see me promptly. They asked mebwhat was wrong and took my vitals. When they took my temperature id was 109.3 and they ran some tests too some x-rays and after a couple of hours of being in the ER and getting the x-rays results, it turned out that I had a bacterial pneumonia. They gave me some antibiotics and pain medication along with a prescription for more antibiotics and tylenol #3 and sent me home. I had never taken tylenol with codeine before and after taking it I went to lay down, I had been in bed not even two minutes when, I don't know with what energy or speed I took off running to the bathroom and the end of the hall from my bedroom and was throwing up. After that my body was able to tolerate the medication. They never gave me or did anything at the hospital to help lower the fever but eventually it did start to go down after the I had been home a day. It took about a week almost to fully recover. Now as far as brain damage, I do not know if it did any to mine since damage beings with a fever of 108. There were no tests done aside from bloodwork and the x-rays. They just kept me in one of the patient rooms for about a couple hours and sent me home after taking the meds  they gave me there and the prescription.  So... I guess you can say that yes.... There is at least one person that has survived a fever of 109. It was actually 109.3 to be exact.
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I Had a fever of 109.8 and because of the fever that high my right kidney stoped growing and I was 6 years old.
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i survived 109 degrees and im fine
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i survived 109 degrees and im fine
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Avatar_m_tn
I am currently at home recovering from emergency surgery last Wednesday night to remove my gall bladder. Apparently, I had "several" gall stones and my gall bladder was infected by the time they figured out why I had severe chest and back pain since last Monday.  

On Tuesday and Wednesday, I had 4 bouts of "rigors" which are severe, uncontrollable chills brought on by high fever. The rigors lasted for about 45 minutes to an hour each time. I had temperatures of between 101 and 106 during the first three times I got the rigors. My entire body shook uncontrollably and the tendons in by hips seized to the point where my kids had to hold my legs down to keep them from being contracted up to my chest.

The last bout of the rigors took place as they were taking me from my hospital hospital room to the surgery department to take out my gall bladder on Wednesday night. My temperature peaked at 109.2 and it hovered between 106 and 109 until it finally started to go down further.  In addition to giving me a gram of Tylenol and some other other anti-fever medication whose name I can't recall, the ER nurses (God bless them!) packed me with cold towels and ice packs to try to break the fever so they could begin the surgery. (I have no idea what it was connected to, but they even put a large air tube that was blowing cold air under my hospital gown on my chest in order to bring it down.) The last thing I recall before the anesthesia kicked in was that they were FINALLY able to get it down to 101.5.

Can you survive a peaky fever of 109? Definitely. The fever really made me feel like I was cooking from within, but from what I can recall, the rigors that the high fevers caused were much more unpleasant than the actual fever.

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All I can say is amazing. But the question is was there any brain damage. You might want to ask the doctor about that. Would you need a CT or MRI. I think survival isn't the question rather than does it cause damage.
Glad you are okay now. I hate the rigors as well. It is awful.

See this article and link:

A fever is any temperature between 99.6° - 105°F. Fever that results in brain damage is a fear that many parents have, but this concern is not warranted. The body won't let a fever get too high from an infection unless there has been damage to the temperature regulator or "thermostat" of the brain, the hypothalamus. Damage to the hypothalamus can occur from a brain infection (meningitis or encephalitis), or a poisoning. When the weather turns warmer, there is a danger of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. During heat stroke, the body loses the ability to cool itself and control body temperature, and brain damage can result. It is very important to remain well hydrated and cool during extreme temperatures. Another major concern for parents are febrile seizures (convulsions). Seizures occur in 2-6% of children with high fevers. It is thought that these seizures are the body's protective mechanism against rising fevers, like a circuit breaker. Although they can be quite traumatic to parents, they are not the result of, nor do they cause damage to the nervous system. It is very rare for a fever to go above 105°F unless there has been damage to the brain.

http://www.drrisley.com/html/fever.html

So it is interesting that you had such a high fever. It does make one wonder if you didn't have a problem with the brain such as an infection that allowed you to have such a high fever.  It is also important that it is not a sustained fever. So if you don't have it long. It may not cause brain damage. Since they got it down then it may be okay. I wonder if you had the infection get into the meninges for a short time and/or blood and that is what caused the spike.


Fevers can be scary, especially for parents who just want their children to feel better. However, not every case of fever warrants worry. The only time the body will sustain damage due to a high temperature is when the body temperature goes over 107.6 degrees. Unless the fever is caused by an outside source (hyperthermia) or there is already a neurological problem, there is almost no chance that the temperature will go this high.

http://coldflu.about.com/od/othercommonillnesses/f/feverbraindamag.htm

There may be some better articles.

Sources:
mkh9
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