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would you take a newborn to the ER?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
This is strictly hypothetical.

The conventional wisdom is that you should take a newborn to the ER for a fever over 100.4. I asked my doctor about this "rule" and she said it's to rule out meningitis, and not because a fever that high can actually cause any long-term damage (which I had always assumed was the reason). And if you take a newborn to the ER, they will give him or her a complete work up, which includes a spinal tap.

So if your newborn had a fever of over 100.4, would you take them in? Or not?
post #2 of 10
No I dont think so- I would call my ped- and use some natural stuff- besides I think fevers are healthy for the most part.
post #3 of 10
I wouldn't. My doc told me when ds was first born to call the office if he had a temp over 101.5....so if that's when he wants a call, I wouldn't bother with the er for lower! lol
post #4 of 10
My ped. said to call the office first. Take a temp under the arm, and if it is over 100 take a rectal then call the office. Then they would talk to me and decide from there. I would not take a newborn to the ER unless I absolutely had to. Er's in my opinion are dirty and icky and full of residents that have no clue what they are doing and have not slept in 3 days! (But I work in the medical profession so I am biased.) Give me a nice clean pedi office any day!!!!
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
I am in agreement with all of you. But I had this conversation with a friend yesterday and she acted like I had six heads. So I just wondered what others thought. I can't STAND the idea of bringing a newborn to a filthy ER.
post #6 of 10
count me in too on the avoid-the-ER perspective. before reading that this was more about temperature/fever, i was thinking i'd probably only take a newborn to the ER if s/he had had a limb severed or the like. i'd be checking my books (Smart Medicine for a Healthier Child, and How to Raise A Healthy Child In Spite of Your Doctor) and asking around in my groups online, and using natural remedies and soothing treatments. i believe it's different for newborns but for young children, according to Smart Medicine by Dr. Robert Mendelsohn, and I've read thsi elsewhere too, it's safe to go up to 105. my former homeopath in montreal said higher. but it depends on the child and the comfort level of the mother, the individual situation and what your gut is telling you.
post #7 of 10
I don't think so. I don't remember her having a fever but I'd never actually heard that "rule" either.
Are there other symptoms of meningitis?
post #8 of 10
I had to laugh when newmomma2005 said a clean ped's office. The only time my dd has gotten sick this year is after her well-child visits at the ped's office. And one of them was RSV.

As for the original question, it depends. If everybody in the family has a cold, then no (unless the rest of the family has been vaxed for meningitis which is highly unlikely). Baby has the same cold. But if baby is the only one sick or the fever is rising and not controlled by tylenol, then yes.

We actually sort of confronted this last week. All four of us got this cold. My dd (21mo) had 102 fever; the newborn had a lower fever (never over 100 though I didn't do a rectal) becaus of the bfeeding. Since we all had the same thing (along with everybdy else we knew), we didn't even call the doctor.
post #9 of 10
With the amount of info I have now, I would not take a newborn to the ER for the condition you describe.

If it is meningitis, what happens? What do they do? What could happen if it wasn't "caught" and got worse?

I agree that ERs (and ped's offices as well) are FULL of germs. Every time we go in for a well child visit, I wonder what illnesses we are exposed to in the waiting room... I've heard of ped's offices that had two waiting rooms, one for sick kids and one for well kids. Sounds great but I've never come across any like that.
post #10 of 10
Kirsten, menengitis is often fatal if not caught and treated quickly enough. And it can be easily spread, so they want to keep that from happening. They do have drugs for it. It can also cause mental retardation.

I would not ever, ever take any child to the ER unless, as some said, they had severed a limb or some such other life-threatening, can't wait emergency.

Always call your pedi. Ask if there's anyone on call. Ask if they'll meet you at their office. Some will meet you at the ER. In fact, ask NOW, before you need ot know. The staff in the ER is not usually trained to deal with children or their diseases very well. And they'll scare the h*ll out of all of you!
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