PFAPA syndrome mimicking familial mediterranean fever: Report of a Turkish child

Atas B., Caksen H., Arslan S., Tuncer O., Kirimi E., Odabas D.

JOURNAL OF EMERGENCY MEDICINE, vol.25, no.4, pp.383-385, 2003 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 25 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2003
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/s0736-4679(03)00234-8
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.383-385
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: No


The PFAPA (Periodic Fever, Aphthous stomatitis, Pharyngitis, Adenitidis) syndrome is characterized by periodic fever, adenitis, pharyngitis, and aphthous stomatitis. Herein, we present a Turkish child with PFAPA syndrome mimicking familial Mediterranean fever because of a rare presentation. A 9-year-old boy was admitted with recurrent fever, aphthous stomatitis, sore throat, headache, and general body pains, lasting 2 to 3 days since 3.5 years of age. He was completely symptom-free between the attacks. He was diagnosed as having familial Mediterranean fever according to the clinical findings when he was 6 years of age and Colchicum tablet was administrated. Despite colchicines therapy for 8 months, his attacks did not subside; therefore, the drug was discontinued. He had high fever, a painful cervical lymphadenopathy, aphthous stomatitis, and tonsillo-pharyngitis. The patient was then diagnosed as having PFAPA syndrome: He was given a single dose of prednisolone (0.35 mg/kg/dose). His complaints dramatically and completely disappeared 3 h after administration of the drug. During the 8(th) month of follow-up, a similar febrile attack lasting only 1 day was noted and it was controlled with a single dose of prednisolone (0.5 mg/kg/day). At this writing the patient is in the 12(th) month of follow-up, and there have,been no symptoms after the second attack. In conclusion, our patient shows that PFAPA syndrome can be confused with familial Mediterranean fever. We also would like to emphasize that the typical PFAPA syndrome can be easily diagnosed by detailed history-taking and physical findings. 2003 Elsevier Inc.