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April 1961

Streptococcal Pharyngitis: Evaluation of Clinical Syndromes in Diagnosis

Author Affiliations

Pediatric Research Laboratory, Long Island Jewish Hospital.

Am J Dis Child. 1961;101(4):476-489. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1961.04020050066011

Although the clinical manifestations of streptococcal pharyngitis have often been described, no single symptom or sign has been found to be present in every case. Reports differ on the ability of investigators to diagnose this illness on clinical grounds.1-7 In many cases, the correct clinical diagnosis was uncertain without the aid of bacteriologic procedures.

The aims of this study were (a) to identify distinctive syndromes characteristic of this illness; (b) to measure a clinician's ability to recognize streptococcal pharyngitis using throat culture as the diagnostic criterion, and (c) to determine the need for and limitations of throat culture in the diagnosis.

During the course of this study, various factors which might influence the clinical diagnosis were evaluated.

Methods and Materials  Throat cultures were taken in 1,141 cases of acute pharyngitis seen in the private practice of one pediatrician from April, 1956, through April, 1959. Of the cases, 93% occurred

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