The majority of throat infections are viral and should not be treated with antibiotics, according to new guidelines from the Infectious Diseases Society of America.
Although bacterial and viral throat infections often have overlapping symptoms, other symptoms, such as cough, rhinorrhea, hoarseness, and oral ulcers, strongly suggest a viral infection, the authors write.
The recommendations are aimed at limiting the antimicrobial treatment of viral infections and correctly identifying and treating cases of group A streptococcal pharyngitis ("strep throat").
The guideline is intended for use by healthcare providers who care for adult and pediatric patients with group A streptococcal pharyngitis.
The guidelines for health professionals are published online September 9 in Clinical Infectious Diseases:
Shulman ST, Bisno AL, Clegg HW, Gerber MA, Kaplan EL, Lee G, Martin JM, Van Beneden C. Clinical Practice Guideline for the Diagnosis and Management of Group A Streptococcal Pharyngitis: 2012. Clin Infect Dis 2012 Sep 9. Click HERE to download the full text.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offer the following tips for
Preventing a Sore Throat
- Practice good hand hygiene
- Avoid close contact with people who have colds or other upper respiratory infections
- Avoid smoking
- Avoid exposure to second hand smoke and do not expose children to second hand smoke
You can get more consumer-friendly information on sore-throat HERE