Five versus ten days treatment of group A streptococcal pharyngotonsillitis: a randomized controlled clinical trial with phenoxymethylpenicillin and cefadroxil

Scand J Infect Dis. 1988;20(1):37-46. doi: 10.3109/00365548809117215.


216 patients aged greater than or equal to 7 years with febrile group A streptococcal pharyngotonsillitis were randomly assigned to 3 treatment groups receiving either phenoxymethylpenicillin for 5 days followed by placebo for 5 days, phenoxymethylpenicillin for 10 days, or cefadroxil for 10 days. 209 patients completed treatment, 70 subjects in each phenoxymethylpenicillin group and 69 in the cefadroxil group. Within 1 week after completion of the antibiotic treatment significantly more recurrences with the same T-type as the initial streptococcal strain occurred in the 5-day treatment group (27%) as compared with the two 10-day groups (6% and 3%, respectively). The cumulative rate of recurrences (irrespective of T-type) within 2 months from the start of therapy was 55% among patients treated with phenoxymethylpenicillin for 5 days, 24% among those treated for 10 days with this drug and 19% among patients receiving cefadroxil. Obviously, one important factor to avoid recurrence of group A streptococcal pharyngotonsillitis is the length of antibiotic treatment and, in our opinion, it is not advisable to change the current recommendation of 10 days treatment.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cefadroxil / administration & dosage*
  • Child
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance
  • Penicillin V / administration & dosage*
  • Pharyngitis / drug therapy*
  • Pharyngitis / microbiology
  • Random Allocation
  • Recurrence
  • Streptococcal Infections / drug therapy*
  • Streptococcus pyogenes
  • Tonsillitis / drug therapy*
  • Tonsillitis / microbiology


  • Cefadroxil
  • Penicillin V