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Reye's Syndrome

more about Reye's Syndrome


  • This is an encephalopathy with associated liver dysfunction.
  • It usually occurs in children who are between 4 years and 12 years old.
  • No gender differences

  • It usually follows a febrile illness, an Upper Respiratory Infection, or chickenpox by 5-7 days.
  • It frequently begins with abrupt onset of vomiting.
  • Irritability, change in level of consciousness, and combative behavior follow within a few hours of vomiting.
  • Child may become semiconscious or stuporous.
  • It may progress to Seizures, coma, and death.

  • The exact cause is unknown.
  • It is associated with Influenza B, varicella, toxins, aspirin, and other salicylates.

  • Based on clinical features such as severe vomiting, Seizure, change in level of consciousness
  • History of febrile illness, an Upper Respiratory Infection, Influenza or chickenpox
  • Blood chemistry tests show low glucose, elevated serum ammonia, elevated liver enzymes, low blood prothrombin
  • Cerebral spinal fluid analysis shows elevated pressure, low glucose, normal protein levels, and normal cell findings.
  • A liver biopsy shows fatty infiltration, abnormalities of cytoplasm and mithochondria.
  • EEG shows diffuse high voltage.

  • Administer glucose intravenously
  • Vitamin K, fresh frozen plasma, and platelet transfusions
  • Administer oxygen, respirator support during a deep coma
  • Increased intracranial pressure: Administer dexamethasone to reduce pressure.
  • Pentobarbital to protect central nervous system

  • It depends on severity of Reye's syndrome
  • In mild cases, recovery is rapid.
  • In severe cases, patients may have permanent neurological complications such as defects in intelligence, school achievement, visual-motor integration and concept formation.

  • Your child needs emergency medical treatment.  Call 911 immediately if your child has confusion, lack of energy, or other mental changes, or severe lack of energy.

  • Metabolic disease such as organic aciduria, urea cycle effects
  • Meningitis, Encephalitis
  • Drug poisoning
  • Hemorrhagic shock with encephalopathy




more about Reye's Syndrome


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