What is BFC?
Benign Febrile Convulsions or BFC are seizures that usually accompany fever symptoms in kids up to 5 years of age. When a particular kid has high temperature or high fever, he/she is said to be febrile, and some form of shivering or convulsion may result from this. During a seizure or convulsion, there is abnormal brain activity leading to the body’s abnormal movements and/or sensations.
Toddlers are the most commonly affected with BFC, but around 5% of kids can also experience the seizures as well. If a family member had BFC in the past, there is also a chance that your kids will experience the symptoms associated with it. The abnormal body movements typically occur within 24 hours of hyperthermia and not necessarily on when the temperature is most high. What usually happens is a particular child will be unconscious and may fall to the floor. After which, the child’s body will become stiff and then the jerking and twitching movements start, which may last for about 10 to 15 minutes.
Many parents get scared and some even panic when they get to see their child moving or shivering uncontrollably for several minutes. But from the word “benign” itself, BFC does not lead to any disorder in the brain or the entire nervous system. Benign Febrile Convulsions are not a form of epilepsy either. Though some may really have nervous system problems that may lead to further brain damage, BFC, when experienced by a child, will just subside in a few minutes without any damage to the brain.
Flu viruses and herpes are said to be the biggest contributors to having Benign Febrile Convulsions. A small percentage of kids will have BFC because of meningitis. Several tests must be made though to rule out the possible causes for BFC, especially if the seizures continue even with the temperature dropping to normal levels. But as advised by many parents and their doctors, kids must be monitored for signs and symptoms when having a fever to give them the best care possible.