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Severe Fever Santa Monica, CA

The human body is amazing in how it is naturally wired to defend against illness and disease. One of the defense mechanisms of the body is a fever. This temporary increase in body temperature often accompanies illness and lets you know that something is not as it should be with your body.

Adults can have a fever as high as 102 F (39 C) before they should become concerned. Temperatures over 103 F (39 C) should be cause for a trip to the doctor’s office. Infants and toddlers with slightly elevated temperatures should be examined by a doctor right away because the fever could indicate a serious infection.

Usually, a fever will subside after a few days. Over-the-counter medications can lower a fever, but if it is not too high, you may want to let it run its course. This is because the body uses the higher temperature to fight off infections.

When to See Your Doctor

If your baby or toddler gets an unexplained fever, you should make a trip to the doctor under these circumstances:

  • Less than 3 months old with a rectal temperature of 100.4 F (38 C) or higher
  • Between 3 and 6 months with a rectal temperature up to 102 F (38.9 C) and is fussy, lethargic or uncomfortable, or if the temperature is higher than 102 F (38.9 C)
  • Between ages 6 and 24 months and has a rectal temperature higher than 102 F (38.9 C) with no other symptoms and the fever has lasted longer than 24 hours

With older children, as long as the child is responsive, there is probably no cause for alarm. If the child has a fever and is vomiting, or is unresponsive, or the fever has lasted longer than three days, make an appointment with the doctor. If your child has immune system problems or pre-existing illness, you should check in with your doctor.

Adults should see a doctor if the temperature is 103 F (39.4 C) or above. Any time one of these symptoms accompanies a fever, you should seek immediate medical attention:

  • Severe headache
  • Unusual skin rash that spreads rapidly
  • Unusual sensitivity to bright lights
  • Stiff neck and pain when bending your head forward
  • Mental confusion
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Difficulty breathing or chest pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Pain with urination
  • Convulsions or seizuresv

Most of the time, a fever is a normal part of the healing process as the body fights off infection. If you or your child is very uncomfortable or experiencing pain, or the fever is not reduced with over-the-counter medication, contact Dr. Michael for an appointment. An examination can determine the next steps for treating the illness.

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Our Patient Reviews

Brent J. Michael, MD

4.7 / 5.0

Based on 34 reviews

Tammy Siever

Dr. Michael is the most Caring Dr. I have had the privilege of having taking care of my health needs. His calm and personal demeanor is above and beyond what I have ever experienced. I have never had issues with the the waiting time but, if ever I did I would not complain because he is worth the wait. I get his complete attention the entire visit. When I leave I feel very confident that he has completely covered my heath needs from head to toe. I would recommend him to anyone who wants is concerned or wants a Dr. to be concerned about their health.

Gianpaolo von Nacher

Dr. Michael has been our family doctor for over 10 years. He has always been the main pillar in our family care; specially a few years ago when my father wouldn’t have been able to get through a very difficult period without his care. He always goes the extra mile. His staff is amazing. Anita, his nurse, always efficient, loving and caring. Aileen, in the front desk, always responsive and helpful. I’m very grateful to have them on our side.

Mark B

I could literally write pages about Dr. Michael. I thankfully met him and his staff over 13 years ago after I had been suffering from a serious lung infection for over a month that 2 other doctors had missed.- 1 due to being totally arrogant and thinking I just had a cold. I was burning up and so sick I could barely walk. Dr. Michael took the time and actually listened to me - instead of just saying its probably just the flu (as the other doctors had done) or just a cold and sending me home, he actually did a complete physical on me an then had the intuition to order a chest x ray on me (I was not even coughing at the time) and then really looked at it and discovered that I actually had a really serious lung infection and started me on antibiotics. While this may sound like no big deal - it actually was, as he actually saw that it was not a normal looking lung infection and I later learned he went above and beyond and had a infectious disease specialist look at the x ray just to be safe and as he suspected it was even more serious. Since that day he has always been my main doctor. I would also like to add that I have a serious long term health condition and most doctors would generally attribute many of my current and past health issues to my main condition (it usually is the case) but Dr. Michael always looks at whatever is happening to me at the moment as if I was a new patient. This is probably his biggest talent and gift as a doctor as he has on more than one occasion over the years thought outside the box with me and has figured out quickly why I was sick at the time - sometimes it was minor but more than a few times it was really serious. His quick way of thinking and knowledge and intuition is what kept me from getting sicker and going into the hospital. If you are looking for a doctor that actually treats you like a person and not a number then see this man. I am not a celebrity or a wealthy person - far from it - but he treats me like I am - many Vets like myself go to the VA and its a great blessing but I just do not have the energy to go there as its so big. Dr. Michael is seriously brilliant and really patient and I am truly thankful I found him.

Edward Dragavon

Dr. Michael takes the time to explain the meaning of medical terms and test results in a way that a lay person can understand. He is very thorough and answers any question that you may have. His staff is also very professional and competent at their tasks. Given a choice, I wouldn't go anywhere else.

Tim Whalen

Dr. Michael is an intelligent caring human being who is focused on positive outcomes. He has a great ability to synthesize the details of lab results and other tests into preventive measures. I greatly respect his approach to care.

William Barry

A very smart and caring doctor. Very intuitive and yet he will base his decisions on test data. Patient for over 10 years. 5 stars

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logo Brent J. Michael, MD Santa Monica, CA

Brent J. Michael, MD

2001 Santa Monica Blvd, Suite 880W
Santa Monica, CA 90404



Mon-Fri: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM