Medical Q&As

Normal heart rate?

What is a normal rate of heartbeat in an 18-month old child? Apparently as a result of MMR vaccination 10 days ago, my daughter is suffering from mild fever, which is not a worry. However, her heart rate is up around 180 for 2 days now. Should I be concerned about this?

The heart rate varies depending on the child’s level of activity. A toddler’s heart would beat approximately 100 times per minute while the child is sleeping and approximately 130 times per minute while active. However a rise in body temperature would increase the heart rate by 20 beats per minute for each one degree centigrade rise above normal. You should find that your child’s heart rate rises as the body temperature climbs and that it slows down to a normal rate as the body cools. If your child’s heart rate has been consistently elevated even when his body temperature is normal it would be worth seeing your GP for added peace of mind.