What is pfapa?
PFAPA is a childhood periodic fever syndrome manifested by recurrent fevers, mouth ulcers, sore throat, and swollen glands. The episodes last about 4 days, and recur every month “like clockwork.” It is the most common periodic fever syndrome of childhood.
Unfortunately, there are no diagnostic tests for PFAPA, and the cause remains unknown. Distinguishing PFAPA fevers from those due to viral infections is difficult, causing delays in diagnosis of months to years.
We believe that wearable thermometers could help doctors make faster and more accurate diagnoses of PFAPA. To test this theory, we are enrolling children with a diagnosis of PFAPA in this study.
Who may participate
Children with PFAPA, diagnosed by a CARRA-affiliated pediatric rheumatologist, will be eligible to enroll. Families will need to have an iPhone to participate.
Our PFAPA study
We are asking participants to wear a small plastic thermometer under the arm, which will automatically record temperatures for a few days before, during, and after a fever flare. The thermometer will connect to your iPhone via Bluetooth to transfer the temperature data. Data will be sent anonymously to a protected online database, which will be accessible to members of the research staff. We are hoping the results of this study will allow doctors to make faster and more accurate diagnoses.
This study is funded by a grant from the Childhood Arthritis and Rheumatology Research Alliance (CARRA), a collaboration of pediatric rheumatologists from across the United States and Canada. The study is organized and approved by the Institutional Review Board at Boston Children’s Hospital.