Intended for healthcare professionals

Primary Care

Penicillin for acute sore throat in children: randomised, double blind trial

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: (Published 04 December 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:1324

'Near quinsy' in untreated strep sore throat

Further to the error in calculation of % of streptococcal sequelae,
already highlighted by another correspondent, allowing for the group lost
to follow-up, in fact not 14% but as many as 18% of placebo treated
children appear to have suffered a complication such as 'near quinsy'.
Tonsillectomy remains one of the commonest childhood operations, and often
it is the 'near quinsy' type of experience which precipitates surgical
The dose of penicillin is interesting: in the UK it is given 4 times daily
- and many under 10's will tolerate only elixir, and not comply with
taking capsules.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

12 December 2003
Janet A Wilson
Prof Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, University of Newcastle
Freeman Hospital Newcastle upon Tyne, NE7 7DN