Short Gut Syndrome Patient, Family & Professional Support Groups

Q: Is every fever an emergency when you have a central line?

Because of the high risk of bloodstream infection and sepsis for patients with a central line, it is common practice for patients with a central line to be instructed to go to the emergency room every time they have a fever of 100.4° F (38° C). There, doctors can take blood cultures and give antibiotics to treat infection.

Central line-associated bloodstream infections can become sepsis, and septic shock can kill. Therefore, it is critical to test for infection and begin treatment as soon as possible.

However, fevers without a known cause, high fevers, or fevers accompanied by rapid breathing, high heart rate, chills, rigors, body pain, or altered mental state indicate sepsis and require hospital treatment without delay.


  1. Symptoms of Sepsis. Sepsis Alliance. Retrieved June 13, 2024, from
  2. Central Line-associated Bloodstream Infection (CLABSI) Basics. Retrieved June 13, 2024 from

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