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April 1958

Failure of Penicillin and Sulfonamide to Prevent Beta-Hemolytic Streptococcal Infections: Sibling Prophylaxis of Streptococcal Infection

Author Affiliations

Rochester, N. Y.
From the Department of Pediatrics of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Dr. Breese) and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Dr. Disney).

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1958;95(4):359-363. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1958.02060050361003

Introduction  One of the problems that confronts the practitioner who sees a child with a streptococcal infection is whether to use chemical or antiobiotic prophylaxis on other members of the family. This study was designed to give information on the advisability of such prophylaxis. To our knowledge, there has been no published information on this subject, although Cannon1 reported a marked effect on prevention of streptococcal infection by the use of 250,000 units of penicillin G orally once daily for five days. In 107 contacts given prophylaxis only 1 case of streptococcal infection developed, whereas in 83 contacts given no prophylaxis, 25 cases were observed. This study was done in Cooperstown, N. Y., in 1955-1956.

Material and Methods  A previous study of ours2 showed that, although approximately 25% of family contacts of patients with primary streptococcal disease became infected, the attack rate in infants, older siblings, and adults