Seventy-five infants and children with suppurative skeletal infections were managed with a sequential parenteral-oral regimen of cephalosporin antibiotic therapy. Initially, parenteral antibiotics (cefamandole for 48 patients and cefuroxime for 27 patients) were given for a median of 5 days. Oral therapy was with large doses of cefaclor (150 mg/kg/day) or cephalexin (100 mg/kg/day). Eight patients (11%) had inadequate serum bactericidal activity with cefaclor. Six of them were successfully managed with alternative oral antibiotics, and parenteral therapy resumed in one patient. Chronic disease developed in a child who was continued on oral cloxacillin therapy in spite of absent serum bactericidal activity. It is concluded that oral therapy can be successful for the majority of patients but that it is hazardous and not indicated if careful laboratory monitoring of compliance and serum bactericidal activity cannot be performed.