The aim of this study was to assess multiplex PCR analysis in detecting causative viruses in children with febrile seizures.
The study was a retrospective analysis comparing data from a pre-multiplex era (2009) with a period after the introduction of routine respiratory multiplex analysis (2010–2013) in children with febrile seizures.
We included 200 children with febrile seizures (mean age: 29.5 ± 1.4.months; 104 male) in the study. In 2009, in 10 out of 49 (20 %) children, microbiology testing (bacterial/fungal) was positive compared with a rate of 74 out of 151 (49 %) children during 2010–2013 (p < 0.01). The rate of positive virological studies increased from 10 (20 %) in 2009 to 73 (48.3 %) in the period 2010–2013 (p < 0.01). Multiplex PCR analysis confirmed viral infections in 52 of 73 cases (71.2 %).
Routine multiplex PCR analysis fosters the detection of respiratory viruses in children with febrile seizure. The precise role of multiplex analysis in the management of these children awaits further clarification.