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Circulation. 2009 Mar 24;119(11):1541-51. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.109.191959. Epub 2009 Feb 26.

Prevention of rheumatic fever and diagnosis and treatment of acute Streptococcal pharyngitis: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association Rheumatic Fever, Endocarditis, and Kawasaki Disease Committee of the Council on Cardiovascular Disease in the Young, the Interdisciplinary Council on Functional Genomics and Translational Biology, and the Interdisciplinary Council on Quality of Care and Outcomes Research: endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Abstract

Primary prevention of acute rheumatic fever is accomplished by proper identification and adequate antibiotic treatment of group A beta-hemolytic streptococcal (GAS) tonsillopharyngitis. Diagnosis of GAS pharyngitis is best accomplished by combining clinical judgment with diagnostic test results, the criterion standard of which is the throat culture. Penicillin (either oral penicillin V or injectable benzathine penicillin) is the treatment of choice, because it is cost-effective, has a narrow spectrum of activity, and has long-standing proven efficacy, and GAS resistant to penicillin have not been documented. For penicillin-allergic individuals, acceptable alternatives include a narrow-spectrum oral cephalosporin, oral clindamycin, or various oral macrolides or azalides. The individual who has had an attack of rheumatic fever is at very high risk of developing recurrences after subsequent GAS pharyngitis and needs continuous antimicrobial prophylaxis to prevent such recurrences (secondary prevention). The recommended duration of prophylaxis depends on the number of previous attacks, the time elapsed since the last attack, the risk of exposure to GAS infections, the age of the patient, and the presence or absence of cardiac involvement. Penicillin is again the agent of choice for secondary prophylaxis, but sulfadiazine or a macrolide or azalide are acceptable alternatives in penicillin-allergic individuals. This report updates the 1995 statement by the American Heart Association Rheumatic Fever, Endocarditis, and Kawasaki Disease Committee. It includes new recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of GAS pharyngitis, as well as for the secondary prevention of rheumatic fever, and classifies the strength of the recommendations and level of evidence supporting them.

PMID:
19246689
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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