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Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol. 2010 Jan-Mar;23(1 Suppl):16-9.

The infections of the upper respiratory tract in children.

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Department of Paediatrics, University of Florence, Anna Meyer University Children's Hospital, Florence, Italy.


Upper respiratory tract infections in children are common and usually self-limiting conditions, which include acute otitis media (AOM), acute rhinosinusitis (ARS), and acute pharyngitis (AP). Management of pediatric AOM considers observation strategy for selected and uncomplicated cases, older than 2 years of age, only when adequate follow-up can be ensured. Otherwise, an antibiotic treatment should be prescribed. Amoxicillin should be preferred as the first-choice therapy. Switch therapy to ceftriaxone is suggested if amoxicillin regimen failure occurs within 48-72 hours. The diagnosis of ARS is established by the persistence of purulent nasal of post-nasal draining lasting at least 10 days especially if accompanied by supporting symptoms and signs. Amoxicillin is the first choice drug for mild ARS in children. When symptoms persist or worsen, amoxicillin/clavulanate or cefpodoxime proxetil, or ceftriaxone are recommended. Clinical criteria alone are not sufficiently accurate in children with AP to distinguish bacterial and viral etiology. Thus microbiological evaluation is needed and positive throat culture or rapid antigen detection test are required to establish the diagnosis of streptococcal pharyngitis and consequently to prescribe antibiotic treatment. The first choice treatment in European countries still remains amoxicillin or amoxicillin/clavulanate.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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