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Scand J Prim Health Care. 1997 Sep;15(3):149-55.

The prevalence of beta-haemolytic streptococci in throat specimens from healthy children and adults. Implications for the clinical value of throat cultures.

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1
Department of Primary Health Care, Göteborg University, Sweden.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine the influence of age and season of the year on the carrier rate of beta-haemolytic streptococci (BHS) in healthy individuals and patients with throat pain.

DESIGN:

The prevalence of BHS in throat specimens from healthy individuals was compared with that from patients with throat pain of the same age in a defined geographical area, collected during the same mid-winter and late summer periods.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of BHS in healthy individuals was low before the age of 3 years (1.9-7.1%) and in adults > or = 16 years (2.4-3.7%) and highest in the age group 3-15 years (5.0-21.2%). The difference in prevalence of BHS between healthy individuals and patients with throat pain was small during the late summer season and large during the mid-winter season.

CONCLUSION:

Prevalence of BHS varies with age and season in healthy individuals and patients with throat pain. During the summer, it is much more difficult to interpret the result of a throat culture in individuals aged < 16 years.

PMID:
9323783
DOI:
10.3109/02813439709018506
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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