An unnoticed origin of fever: periapical tooth abscess. Three case reports and literature review

Infez Med. 2016;24(1):67-70.


Dental infections may lead to severe local or systemic infections such as endocarditis, brain abscesses and mediastinitis. Fever may be the only symptom. We aim to highlight dental/odontogenic abscesses as the occult source of unexplained fever by reporting on three cases and reviewing the relevant literature. Early dental evaluation and referral of patients with persistent fever (even without any oral symptoms) to a dentist plays a critical role in preventing unnecessary, time-consuming and high-cost further diagnostic tests and invasive procedures. A simple panoramic dental radiography may suffice to establish the diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Fever of Unknown Origin / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Periapical Abscess / complications*
  • Periapical Abscess / diagnosis*
  • Periapical Abscess / diagnostic imaging
  • Periapical Abscess / surgery
  • Radiography, Panoramic / methods
  • Root Canal Therapy / methods
  • Tooth Extraction
  • Treatment Outcome