Update on the management of streptococcal pharyngitis

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Acute pharyngitis is a common infection that is typically managed in the outpatient setting. While respiratory viruses are responsible for the majority of cases, group A streptococcus (GAS) is the most common bacterial cause of what is generally referred to as strep throat. The Infectious Diseases Society of America recently released updated clinical practice guidelines for the diagnosis and management of GAS pharyngitis. First-line treatment for GAS pharyngitis is penicillin or amoxicillin, and alternative agents include a first-generation cephalosporin, clindamycin, clarithromycin, and azithromycin. Pharmacists are in a key position to improve outcomes for patients with acute pharyngitis through recommendations for appropriate antimicrobial therapy, monitoring of adverse effects, and prevention of drug interactions.

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