Evaluation and treatment of fever in the non-neutropenic child with cancer

Wanda Salzer, Seth M. Steinberg, David J. Liewehr, Alison Freifeld, Frank M. Balis, Brigitte C. Widemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: To document the current approach to the evaluation and treatment of febrile non-neutropenic children with cancer by surveying American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology (ASPHO) members. Methods: Five hundred ninety-five ASPHO members were sent questionnaires polling their current practices in the evaluation and treatment of clinically stable, febrile (oral temperature of 38°C x2, or ≥38.3°C), non-neutropenic (absolute neutrophil count >500/μL) pediatric cancer patients who have no identifiable bacterial infection. Patients were assigned to one of four groups based on the presence or absence of a central venous catheter (CVC) and no source (NS) or presumed viral source (VS) for fever. Results: Three hundred sixteen ASPHO members (53%) responded and 300 questionnaires were evaluable. If a CVC was present, respondents universally drew blood cultures (99% NS, 96% VS) from the CVC, but only one third drew peripheral blood cultures (33% NS, 29% VS). If a CVC was not present, the majority of respondents (80% NS, 61% VS) drew peripheral cultures. ASPHO members started empiric antibiotics more frequently in patients with a CVC (69% NS, 55% VS) than in patients without a CVC (33% NS, 23% VS). Most did not admit these patients to the hospital (40% CVC and NS, 33% CVC and VS, 22% no CVC and NS, 19% no CVC and VS). ASPHO members with more years of experience were more likely to obtain peripheral blood cultures if a CVC was present and to admit a patient without a CVC. Conclusions: Nearly all respondents obtained a blood culture from the CVC in the initial assessment of the febrile, non-neutropenic patient with a CVC, but other evaluation and management practices varied considerably.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)606-612
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Volume25
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2003
Externally publishedYes

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Central Venous Catheters
Fever
Neoplasms
Hematology
Pediatrics
Therapeutics
Practice Management
Bacterial Infections

Keywords

  • Cancer
  • Children
  • Fever
  • Non-neutropenia
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Oncology
  • Hematology

Cite this

Salzer, W., Steinberg, S. M., Liewehr, D. J., Freifeld, A., Balis, F. M., & Widemann, B. C. (2003). Evaluation and treatment of fever in the non-neutropenic child with cancer. Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, 25(8), 606-612. https://doi.org/10.1097/00043426-200308000-00004

Evaluation and treatment of fever in the non-neutropenic child with cancer. / Salzer, Wanda; Steinberg, Seth M.; Liewehr, David J.; Freifeld, Alison; Balis, Frank M.; Widemann, Brigitte C.

In: Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Vol. 25, No. 8, 08.2003, p. 606-612.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Salzer, W, Steinberg, SM, Liewehr, DJ, Freifeld, A, Balis, FM & Widemann, BC 2003, 'Evaluation and treatment of fever in the non-neutropenic child with cancer', Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, vol. 25, no. 8, pp. 606-612. https://doi.org/10.1097/00043426-200308000-00004
Salzer, Wanda ; Steinberg, Seth M. ; Liewehr, David J. ; Freifeld, Alison ; Balis, Frank M. ; Widemann, Brigitte C. / Evaluation and treatment of fever in the non-neutropenic child with cancer. In: Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. 2003 ; Vol. 25, No. 8. pp. 606-612.
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