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MedPage TodayForehead Temperature Checks May Miss Fevers in Black Patients

In this retrospective cross-sectional study of patients hospitalized for suspected infection, temporal temperature measurement was associated with a lower odds of detecting fever compared with oral measurement in Black patients but not white patients.

“Health care systems routinely use fever cutoffs to trigger notification pathways such as sepsis alerts to systematize timely triage and antibiotic administration. Although the absolute difference between oral and temporal temperatures was small, the findings suggest that this discrepancy combined with commonly used fever cutoffs may lead to fever going undetected in many Black patient.”

Sivasubramanium V. Bhavani, MD

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