Febrile seizures are convulsions that can happen during a fever (febrile means “feverish”). They affect kids 3 months to 6 years old, and are most common in toddlers 12–18 months old. The seizures usually last for a few minutes and are accompanied by a fever above 100.4°F (38°C).
While they can be frightening, febrile seizures usually end without treatment and don’t cause other health problems. Having one doesn’t mean that a child will have epilepsy or brain damage
Simple febrile seizures are usually over in a few minutes, but in rare cases they can last up to 15 minutes. During this type of seizure, a child’s whole body may convulse, shake, and twitch; his or her eyes may roll; and he or she may moan or become unconscious. Children can sometimes vomit or urinate (pee) on themselves during the convulsions.
Complex febrile seizures can last more than 15 minutes or happen more than once in 24 hours. They may also involve movement or twitching of just one part of the body.
Febrile seizures stop on their own, while the fever may continue for some time. Some kids might feel sleepy afterward; others feel no lasting effects.