Antipyretic Drugs

Antipyretic drugs or fever reducers work by inhibiting prostaglandin synthesis, a process that is required to maintain a fever. By inhibiting these actions, the preoptic nuclei of the anterior hypothalamus (POAH) reduce or reset body temperature from feverish levels to baseline temperature. A 1999 survey by Crocetti and colleagues identified the existence of “fever phobia” among caregivers of children, meaning an unreasonable fear of fever founded in misconceptions about what fever is, and a tendency to overtreat this symptom. Crocetti and colleagues also noted that this same fever phobia had been identified 20 years prior by Barton Schmitt. Due to their common over-the-counter use, there is some worry that these drugs are being used improperly and that overuse may be dangerous on the individual and ...

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