Comparison of tympanic and rectal temperature in febrile patients.

Abstract:

OBJECTIVE:To compare tympanic membrane temperature and rectal temperature in febrile pediatric patients. METHODS:Sixty febrile children were enrolled as continuous enrollment at initial triage. Two readings of ear temperature were taken in each child with Thermoscan infrared thermometer. Rectal temperature was recorded by a digital electronic thermometer. Comparison of both the techniques was done and co-relation co-efficients calculated. Parental preference for both techniques was assessed. RESULTS:It was observed that mean ear temperature was 38.9+/-0.90 C and that for rectal temperature was 38.8+/-0.80 degrees C. The correlation coefficient between the two was 0.994 (p < 0.01). Coefficients for both sites were comparable over a wide age range. The difference between readings taken from two ears was not significant. Temperature ranges over which readings were recorded were quite wide for both techniques. Parental preference for tympanic thermometry over rectal thermometry was noticed. Tympanic thermometry utilizes pyro-electric sensors, to detect infra-red rays emitted from the surface of tympanic membrane. Ear temperatures correlates well with rectal temperatures which have long been considered as "core" temperatures. Parents prefer the technique of ear thermometry which is quick (2 sec), safe and non-invasive and patient resistance for this is also less. CONCLUSION:A non-invasive, non-mucous device which is accurate over a wide range of temperature could be very useful.

journal_name

Indian J Pediatr

authors

Sehgal A,Dubey NK,Jyothi MC,Jain S

doi

10.1007/BF02723215

keywords:

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2002-04-01 00:00:00

pages

305-8

issue

4

eissn

0019-5456

issn

0973-7693

journal_volume

69

pub_type

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