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Table 4 Beliefs and practices influencing antipyretic use for managing childhood fever as reported by parents (N = 402)

From: Beliefs and practices regarding childhood fever among parents: a cross-sectional study from Palestine

Variable Frequency (%)
Decisions to use medications were primarily influenced by  
 To reduce temperature only when elevated 126 (31.3)
 Presence of pain or discomfort 51 (12.7)
 Presence of illness symptoms (e.g. vomiting, cough, cold) 42 (10.4)
 Sleeping problems 19 (4.7)
 Not eating or drinking 24 (6.0)
 Presence of a history of febrile convulsions 48 (11.9)
 Non-pharmacological or homeopathic methods were ineffective 54 (13.4)
 Sleeping problems + not eating or drinking + non-pharmacological methods were ineffective 26 (6.5)
 All factors 12 (3.0)
Daily maximum frequency of antipyretic usage  
 1 30 (7.5)
 2 126 (31.3)
 3 118 (29.4)
 4 109 (27.1)
 5 5 (1.2)
 6 14 (3.5)
Factors influencing frequency of administration  
 Instructions on drug leaflet 55 (13.7)
 Physician’s instructions 248 (61.7)
 Pharmacist’s instructions 15 (3.7)
 Severity of the accompanying disease 12 (3.0)
 Degree of elevated temperature 60 (14.9)
 Child’s weight 4 (1.0)
 Child’s age 8 (2.0)
Factors influencing antipyretic dose  
 Drug instructions on leaflet 60 (14.9)
 Physician’s instructions 221 (55.0)
 Pharmacist’s instructions 31 (7.7)
 Severity of accompanying disease symptoms 8 (2.0)
 Child’s age 31 (7.7)
 Child’s weight 8 (2.0)
 Degree of temperature elevation 12 (3.0)
 Child’s inactivity 1 (0.2)
 Drug instructions on leaflet + Child’s weight 30 (7.5)
Preferred antipyretics pharmaceutical dosage form  
 Syrups 206 (51.2)
 Suppositories 63 (15.7)
 Injections 6 (1.5)
 Syrups and suppositories combined 127 (31.6)
Difficulties experienced during administration of medications  
 Children refusing to swallow the medication 197 (49.0)
 Children spitting it out 128 (31.8)
 Children being too distressed by the illness/fever 46 (11.4)
 Children being too sleepy 18 (4.5)
 Children refusing to swallow the medication + children spitting it out 13 (3.2)
Procedure to ensure that febrile children received their medications  
 Used force 19 (4.7)
 Coaxed and encouraged their child 269 (66.9)
 Mixed the medication with foods or drinks 44 (10.9)
 Sought medical advice 10 (2.5)
 Gave suppositories instead of syrup 50 (12.4)
 Used non-pharmacological methods 10 (2.5)
Beliefs about the harmful outcomes associated with antipyretic use  
 Liver damage 60 (14.9)
 Overdose 46 (11.4)
 Kidney damage 65 (16.2)
 Effect on stomach 68 (16.9)
 Immunity suppression 7 (1.7)
 Allergic reactions 84 (20.9)
 Other 72 (17.9)