Fever of Unknown Origin Symptoms

  • Symptoms

    The primary symptom of FUO is a temperature higher than 101°F (38.3°C) on several occasions that lasts longer than three weeks. Additional symptoms may be dependent on the underlying cause of the FUO. For example, lower extremity weakness, back pain, and a history of urinary tract infection may indicate that FUO is caused by osteomyelitis—especially in patients with prosthetic devices. An accompanying heart murmur may indicate that infective endocarditis is the cause of FUO.

  • Risk Factors

    Risk factors depend on the underlying cause of FUO. Since infections account for the majority of FUO cases in adults, exposure to infectious microorganisms is a common risk factor, and should be avoided.

    Patients who have undergone a solid organ or bone marrow transplant, or who received blood products, are at an increased risk for cytomegalovirus infection, which can lead to FUO. People who have had abdominal trauma or surgery may have an increased risk of developing an abscess, which can also lead to FUO.

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