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The Role of Fever in Healing and Repair

super hero kidFever is a systematic response to infection. It is generally agreed that moderate elevation of body temperature improves the body’s disease fighting ability. A fever caused by infection actually helps the body destroy its microbial invaders.

Marieb, E. Human Anatomy and Physiology, P.179

One of the reasons that you feel bad when you have the flu, is that higher levels of interferon cause you to have certain symptoms, including fever and chills. This is evidence that your body is working hard to get rid of the virus.

Mahony, R. Gargan, S. Roberts., K.A novel anti-viral
role for STAT3 in IFN-α signaling responses.2016


Supporting Resources

“Fever is the body’s normal response to infection, it’s a natural defense mechanism. A high temperature triggers the
body’s production of infection fighting white blood cells and inhibits the growth of viruses and bacteria. If you lower the fever, you may be affecting the body’s ability to respond to that infection.”

Sullivan, J. Fever and Antipyretic Use in
Children Pediatrics Mar.2011, Vol 127 #3

Scientists have found more evidence that elevated body temperature helps certain types of immune cells to work better
and that the immune system might be temporarily enhanced functionally when our temperatures rise with fever.

Mace, A. Zhong, L. Kilpatrick,C. Differentiation of
CD8+ T cells into effector cells is enhanced by physiological range hyperthermia. Nov. 2011 90:951-962;

A study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found that children who ran a fever during their first year were less likely to develop allergies later in childhood than children who did not experience fevers. L. Keoki Williams The relationship between early fever and allergic sensitization at age 6 to 7 years.

Journal of Allergy and Clinical
Immunology 113(2): 291-296 (2004)

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