A temperature > 39.5° C (> 103° F) during the 1st trimester increases risk of spontaneous abortion and fetal brain or spinal cord defects. Fever late in pregnancy increases risk of preterm labor.
Treatment is directed at the cause, but antipyretics are indicated to decrease maternal temperature. In women with severe hyperthermia, cooling blankets may be used.
Last full review/revision December 2008 by Sean C. Blackwell, MD