CASES referred to as fever or pyrexia of unknown origin often present a diagnostic challenge to practitioners. The main approach to diagnosis is to identify the reason for the pyrexia. Clinical signs are often non-specific and may fluctuate in severity and alter with chronicity. Although it is theoretically desirable not to instigate any treatment before a full investigation has been carried out, in practice this is often difficult and a response to specific therapies can help in the diagnosis. If there are no localising signs, a series of simple screening tests is necessary to try to identify a septic, inflammatory or neoplastic focus.
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