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It is interesting to read that Dr Sanderson does not see many of his
patients with sore throat again after carrying out a throat swab with the
promise of an antibiotic when the result of the swab is known.(1) This
issue relates directly to the arguments debated in the article by Kolmos
and Little(2). In their article Little comments that diagnostic testing
may have a medicalising effect that may ultimately result in an increase
in consultations. Obviously this area needs clarification- a research
Lecturer / Practitioner in Clinical pharmacy
School of Pharmacy, The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, AB10 1FR.
1. Sanderson A. Prescribing antibiotics for sore throat: doctor uses
different method from authors. BMJ 1999; 318:1013.
2. Kolmos HJ, Little P. Should general practitioners perform
diagnostic tests on patients before prescribing antibiotics?