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Use QuikRead go Strep A test for targeted treatment

A recent publication by Stefaniuk et al. (1), the benefits of using QuikRead go Strep A test for pharyngitis were evaluated. In the study QR go Strep A results were compared to culture results and to the Centor/McIsaac scores which were calculated for the patients.

The specificity and sensitivity of the test for the entire study group were 85% and 91%, respectively. The performance was also evaluated for two different age groups. For the age group 3–14 years the specificity and sensitivity were 91% and 80%. In all cases of false negative results, the S. pyogenes growth was assessed to be only one plus (+), which reflects light growth. Therefore, it seems that the lower sensitivity in children was related to the low count of S. pyogenes bacteria in the sample. Single colonies growth may also be related to S. pyogenes colonisation. In patients above 14 years the specificity and sensitivity were 77% and 100%. Negative test results in adult patients are related with 100% sensitivity, and the NPV makes it possible for the physician to use the result for avoiding unnecessary treatment with antibiotics.

The authors conclude that acute pharyngitis is a diagnostic challenge due to clinical symptoms which fit both viral and bacterial aetiology. Correct diagnosis is important as this is one of the most common conditions seen in general practice and as much as 70% of patients receive unnecessary antibiotic treatments for their symptoms (2). They also came to the conclusion that the possibility to use rapid diagnostic tests of high sensitivity and specificity may reduce antibiotic overuse and misuse in pharyngitis, which usually does not require treatment. Quick diagnostic tests, such as QuikRead go® Strep A, can aid decision making on using antibiotics in acute pharyngitis and tonsillitis.

References:
1.    The use of rapid test QuikRead go Strep A in bacterial pharyngotonsillitis diagnosing and therapeutic decisions. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2017 Apr 21. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=The+use+of+rapid+test+QuikRead+go%C2%AE+Strep+A+in+bacterial
2.    Linder JA, Stafford RS (2001) Antibiotics treatment of adults with sore throat by community primary care physicians. JAMA 286:1181–1186