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Ibuprofen first choice for febrile children

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Nurses should use ibuprofen as a first choice when trying to treat fever in children, according to researchers from Bristol University.

They investigated whether paracetamol plus ibuprofen were superior to either drug alone in treating 156 children aged between six months and six years with a temperature of between 37.8°C and 41.0°C. They said combined therapy cleared fever 23 minutes faster than paracetamol alone but no faster than ibuprofen alone.

As a result they said ibuprofen should be tried first, said the authors, after which clinicians could consider the relative benefits and risks of using paracetamol plus ibuprofen over 24 hours.

BMJ (2008) 337: a1302

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