HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Singapore or Virtually from your home or work.

3rd Edition of

Singapore Nursing Research Conference

March 16-18, 2023 | Singapore

Nursing 2022

DiffTemp, a new way to assess increased body temperature as fever Clinical implications

Speaker at Singapore Nursing Research Conference 2022 - Marta Sund Levander
Linkoping University, Sweden
Title : DiffTemp, a new way to assess increased body temperature as fever Clinical implications


Assessment of body temperature:
Assessment of body temperature is an important sign of health and disease, in everyday life, for medical decisions, for nursing care, and when ordering laboratory test. When assessing body temperature, we must understand thermoregulatory mechanisms and consider several ‘errors’, such as the influence of gender, age, diurnal rhythm and site of measurement. Though, when definitions of normal body temperature as 37 °C (98.6 °F) and ‘fever* as 38 °C (100.4 °F) was established in the middle of the 19th century, little was known about these “errors” as well as immunology, microbiology and technical accuracy. Although today there is a general acceptance of body temperature as a range rather than a fixed temperature, the traditional definitions of normal body temperature and fever still are considered the world-wide norm. As consequence there is a widespread confusion of the assessment and evaluation of body temperature
Assessment of fever:
Fever is often increased as an adaptive, coordinated and systematic response to an immune stimulus, and as a self-limiting response in which thermoregulatory control remains intact, and generally requires no treatment. However, in the first instance most people think of fever as equating to an elevated body temperature because of infectious disease. In fact, it is common to ‘measure fever’ more than to measure body temperature. What is considered as increased temperature in fever is also related to site of measurement depending on temperature gradients within the body and the need of lag time for adjustment to the set point temperature, especially when body temperature is rising and falling
Aim of the presentation:
It is of great importance to base the assessment and evaluation of temperature on evidence-based medicine, and not on tradition or personal belief. In this presentation we will argue for and discuss clinical consequences of a new way of defining fever, the so called DiffTemp™ i.e. at least 1.0 °C (33.8 °F) increase from individual body temperature, combined with malaise, as an accurate definition of temperature in fever.


Märta Sund Levander, RN, Ph.D., Assoc. Professor, senior researcher and lecturer at the Medical Faculty Linköping University, Sweden. She teaches nursing students at the undergraduate, specialist, and advanced levels. She has several years of clinical and research experience as a specialized nurse, especially in critical care, eldercare, infection control, and research and development. Her research area is assessment and evaluation of body temperature and its clinical implications, such as signs and symptoms of infection in critically ill, frail elderly and children. She has published about 45 papers in scientific journals and popular science papers and textbooks for health professional students and clinical practice. She is a member in the international expert group ISO ISO/TC 121/SC 3/JWG 8 "Clinical thermometers".