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Article |

Non-Group A Streptococci in the Pharynx:  Pathogens or Innocent Bystanders?

Gregory F. Hayden, MD; Thomas F. Murphy, MD; J. Owen Hendley, MD
Am J Dis Child. 1989;143(7):794-797. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1989.02150190044018.
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• Objective:  To determine whether β-hemolytic streptococci from groups other than A are an important cause of sporadic pharyngitis in children.

Design:  Cross-sectional, case-referent survey.

Setting:  General pediatric clinic at a military base in Ohio.

Participants:  One hundred fifty children with symptomatic pharyngitis and 150 controls matched for age and time of presentation over a 20-month study period.

Interventions:  None.

Measurements/Main Results:  Anaerobic culture technique was used to improve isolation of β-hemolytic streptococci. Group A β-hemolytic streptococci were detected significantly more often among the ill children than among the controls (39% vs 16%, respectively). In contrast, non–group A β-hemolytic streptococci were isolated in similar frequency from the ill and control children (17% vs 21%, respectively). Non–group A β-hemolytic streptococci from groups B, C, F, and G were each isolated in similar frequency among the ill and control children. The isolation rate of non–group A organisms increased with age among both patients and controls.

Conclusions:  Non–group A β-hemolytic streptococci seemed not to be an important cause of sporadic pharyngitis in this pediatric population.(AJDC. 1989;143:794-797)

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