Continuous temperature monitoring in PFAPA study

What is pfapa?

Periodic fevers, Aphthous stomatitis, Pharyngitis, and Adenitis


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.

Go to challenges


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.

Go to opportunities


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.

Go to Who may participate

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

Continuous temperature monitoring
Continuous temperature monitoring

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.




Jonathan S. Hausmann, MD

Principal Investigator
Dr. Hausmann is a pediatric and adult rheumatologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Fatma Dedeoglu, MD

Principal Investigator
Dr. Dedeoglu is a pediatric rheumatologist and immunologist at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Kalpana Manthiram, MD, MSCI

Dr. Manthiram is a pediatric infectious disease physician and Fellow at the National Institutes of Health.

Sivia Lapidus, MD

Dr. Lapidus is a Pediatric Rheumatologist at Goryeb Children’s Hospital.

Edwin Anderson, BA, CCRP

Research Coordinator
Mr. Anderson is a Senior Clinical Research Coordinator at Boston Children’s Hospital.

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