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To the Editor: Thank you for sending me the thoughtful comments of Dr. Joel Alpert. Dr. Alpert suggests that our low "cure rates" might be due to (1) putting the penicillin in chocolate or some other substance and (2) that the doses given were inadequate. He mentions the fact that we did not generally find measurable amounts of penicillin in the serum in the penicillin-treated youngsters. Since this method was only a preliminary and probably inaccurate one I would feel that the method was at fault, since children taking the drug as described were found to have, almost without exception, negative throat cultures while on treatment and when the bloods were taken.
Next, one should point out that the failure rate of 31% in the penicillin-treated cases was the gross recurrence rate. Based on previous experience, about 50% of these infections would be due to a different type—leaving a "corrected"
BREESE BB. STREPTOCOCCAL ILLNESS-Reply. Am J Dis Child. 1966;112(2):166. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1966.02090110109017