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Question
Posted by: Dad | 2008/08/11

Todler shivers ?

The school my 22 month old boy attends brought to our attention that he shivers a lot. At home we have not noticed it to be severe to warrant a visit to the GP. We stay in the North West province and ambient temperatures are not low plus he is dressed warm (tracksuit in the morning). Any advise on what it might be?

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Our expert says:
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Dear Dad
The most obvious cause of shivering in a child this age would be fever, or not being dressed warm enough. However, some neurological problems like tremors, spasms and seizures can look like shivering. Other causes could be iron deficiency anemia, diabetes, underactive thyroid or underlying chronic infection like a chronic kidney infection.

It is difficult to give you an idea of the cause without examining him, but I think you should maybe have him evaluated by a pediatrician just to check that he does not have any of these problems. They may need to do some blood tests and/or an EEG to check his brain waves.

While waiting for the appointment, check his temperature when this happens, check his hands and feet - are they cold, blue or white when this happens, check his wakefulness, does he seem to be in a daze or does he react normally when you talk to him or ask him questions? Can he do fine things with his hands like picking up small objects (like smarties) from a surface when this happens or does he seem to be more clumsy? How many times a day does this happen, only now and then or regularly? Is there any relationship with his meals or with eating sweet things? Do you smell an acetone like smell on his breath when this happens?

Please let me know what the pediatrician says?
Dr Bets

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