The aim of this study is to present diagnostic patterns, diagnostics used and antibiotic treatment in relation to guidelines in 3 repeated diagnosis-prescription studies conducted simultaneously in general practice in 5 Swedish counties, during 1 week in November 2000, 2002 and 2005. General practitioners (GPs) at the participating health centres were asked to complete a form for all patients with symptoms of an infectious disease. During the studied periods a total of 15,371 consultations was registered. Consultations with GPs diagnosed as respiratory tract infection (RTI), especially consultations for sore throat, decreased considerably between y 2000 and 2005. The percentage of patients allocated an RTI diagnosis and prescribed an antibiotic declined significantly from 54% to 49% and the decline was most pronounced among children. Penicillin V remained the dominant antibiotic prescribed throughout the study periods. For lower urinary tract infections there was a significant change in choice of prescribed antibiotics with an increase for pivmecillinam and nitrofurantoin and a decrease for trimethoprim, in accordance with recommendations. The results indicate a quite close adherence to current guidelines, with changes in the pattern of consultations as well as in the management of infectious diseases in general practice in Sweden.