On Tuesday I received a note from Steve introducing me to his new website – Fever Effect. The tagline for the site is “Autistic behavioral changes coinciding with fever” and it immediately caught my attention. While I hadn’t read the research studies that Steve mentions on his site, we had an experience with fever and behavioral changes in my daughter.
In October 2007, my daughter came down with what ended up being adenovirus. Adenovirus is a common respiratory illness and most people get it and never know because it isn’t necessary to run the test to confirm infection. For nearly a week we cared for her at home and with daily visits to the pediatrician. At one point in the pediatrician’s office her temperature registered at 106.1. She was responsive and quickly cooled down after receiving a dose of Tylenol and removing her clothing.
That night her fever topped out at 106.9 and so during the next morning’s visit to the pediatrician, we were referred to the local Children’s Hospital. Upon admission into the hospital they ran a battery of tests and it was determined that she had adenovirus. She recovered completely and after a few nights we were sent home.
Looking back at that time, though, we all realized that something changed in her. She suddenly began to grow, developmentally, by leaps and bounds. Language acquisition sped up, she started to grow cognitively, some of her sensory seeking behaviors were lessened, etc. Although she still had a long way to go, she was definitely a different goal post high fever than she was before.
So back to Steve’s website, Fever Effect. Steve experienced something similar with her daughter Julia. A fever allowed her to sing songs and expand her language. Unlike my daughter, though, Julia’s language reverted back to her normal level.
This fever effect is truly fascinating. If you have a similar story, please head on over to Fever Effect and share your story with others.