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March 1993

Recurrent Tonsillitis: The Role of Chlamydia and Mycoplasma

Author Affiliations

Brooklyn, NY

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1993;119(3):355. doi:10.1001/archotol.1993.01880150111018

To the Editor.—I recently had the opportunity to read the article in the Archives by Charnock et al1 on the role of Chlamydia and Mycoplasma in recurrent tonsillitis. Unfortunately, it has some serious scientific and methodologic problems. The most serious problem is that the authors picked the wrong chlamydial species. It is now well accepted that Chlamydia trachomatis does not cause any respiratory disease beyond infancy. The study by Komaroff et al2 cited by the authors was a serologic study; no cultures were done. In retrospect, the seroconversions they observed were probably due to cross-reactions with the newly described third chlamydial species, Chlamydia pneumoniae. Actually, to my knowledge, there are no studies of pharyngitis or pneumonia in adults that have ever isolated C trachomatis from any respiratory site, and that includes the study by Gerber et al3 that Charnock and colleagures cite as supportive data. It

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