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Fever or pyrexia is defined as a rise in the body temperature above 99 degree Fahrenheit(37 degree Celsius).The cause of fever are infection,diseases of the nervous system,certain malignant neoplasms,blood diseases such as leukemia,embolism and thrombosis,heat stroke from exposure to hot environment,dehydration,surgical trauma and crushing injuries,skin abnormalities that interfere with the heat loss,allergic reactions to foreign proteins and pyrogens.
NATURE OF DISEASE:
In fever,all the systems of the body are affected.It may vary with the nature of the diseases.
1.Respiratory System:Shallow and rapid breathing.
2.Circulatory System:Increased pulse rate and palpitation.
3.Alimentary System:Dry mouth,coated tongue,loss of appetite,indigestion,nausea, vomiting,constipation or diarrhea.
4.Urinary System:Diminished urinary output,burning micturition,high colored.
6.Musculo-skeletal System:malaise,fatigue,body pain,joint pain.
7.Integumentary System:Heavy sweating,hot flushes,goose flush,shivering or rigors.
Fever is not a disease but it is a sign.Fever is a protective function of the body,because the rise in temperature prevents the growth of organisms causing the disease.Fever if not too high, hastens the destruction of bacteria by increasing phagocytosis, and by producing immune bodies.A temperature of 104 to 105 for several hours will destroy the organisms of syphilis and gonorrhea.The range in the body temperature within which the cells can function efficiently is between 34 to 41 degree Celsius(94 to 106).The central nervous system is extremely sensitive to the temperature variations.Irreversible changes may occur in the nervous systems if the body temperature goes above 41 or below 34 degree Celsius.
TYPES OF FEVER:
1.Onset or invasion:Onset or invasion of fever is the period when the body temperature is rising and it may be a sudden or gradual process.
2.Fastigium or stadium: Fastigium or stadium of fever id the period when the body temperature has reached its maximum and remains fairly constant at a high level.
3.Defervescence or decline: Defervescence or decline of the fever is period when the elevated temperature is returning to normal.The fever may subside suddenly or gradually.
4.Crisis:Crisis is a sudden return to normal temperature from a very high temperature within a few hours or days.
5.True Crisis:The temperature falls suddenly within few hours and touches normal,accompanied by a marked improvement in the patients condition.
6.False Crisis:A sudden fall in temperature not accompanied by an improvement in the general condition is called false crisis.It may be a danger signal and not a sign of improvement.
7.Lysis: The temperature falls in a zig-zag manner for two or three days or a week before reaching normal,during which time the other symptoms also gradually disappear.
8.Constant fever or Continuous fever:Constant fever or continuous fever is one in which the temperature varies not more than two degrees between morning and evening and it does not reach normal for a period of days or weeks.
9.Remittent fever: Remittent fever is a fever characterized by variations of more than two degrees between morning and evening but does not reach normal.
10.Intermittent or quotidian fever:The temperature rises from normal or subnormal to high fever and back at regular intervals.The interval may vary from few hours to three days.Usually the temperature is higher in the evening than in the morning.
11.Inverse fever:In this type the highest range of temperature is recorded in the morning hours and the lowest in the evening which is contrary to that found in the normal course of the fever.
12.Hectic or swinging fever:When the difference between the high and low points is very great,the fever is called hectic or swinging fever.
13.Relapsing fever:Relapsing fever is one in which there are brief febrile periods followed by one or more days of normal temperature.
14.Irregular fever:When the fever is entirely irregular in its course,it cannot be classified under any one of the fevers described above and it is called irregular fever.
PHASES OF FEVER:
1.Rigor:Rigor is a sudden severe attack of shivering in which the body temperature rises rapidly to a stage of hyprepyrexia as seen in malaria.
2.Low pyrexia:In low pyrexia the fever does not rises above 99 to 100 degree Farthing or 37.2 to 37.8 degree Celsius.
3.Moderate pyrexia:The body temperature remains between 100 to 103 degree Fahrenheit or 37.8 to 39.4 degree Celsius.
4.High pyrexia:The temperature remains between 103 to 105 degree Fahrenheit or 39.4 to 40.6 degree Celsius.
5.Hyper pyrexia: The temperature goes above 105 degree Fahrenheit.
6.Subnormal temperature:When the body temperature falls below normal it is called subnormal temperature.The temperature may vary between 95 to 98 degree Fahrenheit or 35 36.7 degree Celsius.
7.Hyperthermia: When the body temperature is raised to 105 degree Fahrenheit or above it is called hyperpyrexia.
8.hypothermia:If the temperature falls below 95 degree Fahrenheit or 35 degree Celsius,the condition is called hypothermia.
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