Welcome back to the Blueberry Med Minute, where once a week you’ll learn something new from Blueberry’s very own Dr. Lyndsey Garbi. Today Dr. Garbi shares how doctors know whether to prescribe antibiotics for sore throats.
Hi, back with another med minute. Last time I spoke to you a little bit about antibiotic use and how it’s not needed for viruses. This time let’s talk about when they are needed for something like strep throat.
Strep throat is caused by bacteria, the bacteria that causes it is called group A streptococcus, that’s why we call it strep throat. And the symptoms that usually accompany it are a red and painful throat and fever. However, if those symptoms come along with things like a runny nose, cough, congestion, red eyes, even with that fever and sore throat it’s usually not that bacterial infection caused by the streptococcus bacteria that’s causing it. It’s usually viral with those other symptoms and antibiotics are not going to help it and are not needed.
So if your child has symptoms that you’re really not sure about you should always talk to your pediatrician who can do a throat culture and decide if antibiotics are needed or not.