Pharmacy World and Science

, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 161–164 | Cite as

General practitioners and fever: a study on perception, self-care and advice to patients

  • J. R. Eskerud
  • A. Brodwall


To investigate their perception of fever problems, self-care and information given to patients, a random sample of 100 Norwegian general practitioners were interviewed in 1989–1990 by telephone. More than two-thirds of the general practitioners would define fever as a body temperature above 38.0°C. One-third would wait with antipyretic drug therapy for children until the temperature was above 39.5°C. When dealing with fever in their own children, one-third would not follow their own recommendations to parents with febrile children. 43% Had not discussed guidelines for the management of febrile patients with their receptionists. Only 7% had discussed such guidelines with the local pharmacists. Lack of consistency in the information given to patients may result in confusing advice. General practitioners, their receptionists and the local pharmacists should discuss and define guidelines for fever management and information to patients and parents. These should include information about antipyretic therapy and consultation behaviour.


Analgesics, anti-inflammatory Fever Patient information Physicians, family 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Eskerud JR, Lærum E, Fagerthun H, Lunde PKM, Næss A. Fever in general practice I. Frequency and diagnoses. Fam Pract 1992;9:263–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Du Bois EF. Why are fever temperatures over 106°F rare? Am J Med Sci 1949;217:361–8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Schmitt BD. Fever in childhood. Pediatrics 1984;74:929–36.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Fletcher JL Jr, Creten D. Perceptions of fever among adults in a family practice setting. J Fam Pract 1986;22:427–30.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Schmitt BD. Fever phobia. Misconceptions of parents about fevers. Am J Dis Child 1980;134:176–81.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Kramer MS, Naimark L, Leduc DG. Parental fever phobia and its correlates. Pediatrics 1985;75:1110–3.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Eskerud JR, Hoftvedt BO, Lærum E. Fever: knowledge, perception and attitudes. Results from a Norwegian population study. Fam Pract 1991;8:32–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Eskerud JR, Hoftvedt BO, Lærum E. Fever: management and self-medication. Results from a Norwegian population study. Fam Pract 1991;8:148–53.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Leduc DG, Pless IB. Pediatricians and general practitioners: a comparison of the management of children with febrile illness. Pediatrics 1982;70:511–5.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Gray JD, Blaschke TF. Fever: to treat or not to treat. Rat Drug Ther 1985;19:1–6.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Mackowiak PA, editor. Fever. Basic mechanisms and management. New York: Raven Press, 1991.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Horwath SM, Menduke H, Piersol GM. Oral and rectal temperatures of man. JAMA 1950;144:1562–5.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Baraff LJ. Management of the febrile child: a survey of pediatric and emergency medicine residency directors. Pediatr Infect Dis J 1991;10:795–800.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Bøttiger LE. Feber [Fever]. Nord Med 1992;107:2.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Gudnason P, Ludvigsson P. Feber hos barn [Childhood fever]. Nord Med 1992;107:10–1.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Lærum E. Feber [Fever]. In: Vennerød AM, editor. Norsk legemiddelhåndbok 1992–93 for heisepersonell. Oslo: Norsk legemiddelhåndbok I/S, 1992.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kouvalainen K. Feber — vaen aller fiende? [Fever — friend or foe?] Nord Med 1992;107:4–5.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Eskerud JR, Laerum E, Fagerthun H, Lunde PKM. Fever in general practice II. Reasons for encounter, management and duration of fever conditions. Fam Pract 1992;9:425–32.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Eskerud JR, Andrew M, Strømnes B, Toverud EL. Pharmacy personnel and fever: a study on perception, self-care and information to customers. Pharm World Sci 1993;15(4):156–60.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Colombotos J. Personal versus telephone interviews: effect on responses. Public Health Rep 1969;84:773–82.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Curtis P, Talbot A, Evens S, Smart A, Speros L. The telephone survey in family practice. J Fam Pract 1981;12:521–6.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Styrt B, Sugarman B. Antipyresis and fever. Arch Intern Med 1990;150:1589–97.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Donabedian A. The quality of care. How can it be assessed? JAMA 1988;260:1743–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Quality assurance working party of WONCA Quality assurance for family doctors. Wellington: George Jeffery & Co, 1992.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Joint Working Group of the Research Unit of the Royal College of Physicians and the British Paediatric Association Guidelines for the management of convulsiones with fever. BMJ 1991;303:634–6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Periodicals Service Company 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. R. Eskerud
    • 1
  • A. Brodwall
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of General PracticeUniversity of OsloOsloNorway

Personalised recommendations