Management of sore throat in Danish general practices

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Background: The national guideline for sore throat, endorsed by the Danish Society of General Medicine, recommends the use of the modified Centor score and streptococcal rapid antigen detection test to guide diagnosis and treatment of sore throat. The aim was to investigate Danish general practitioners (GPs) routine management of sore throat patients with a focus on the modalities used and adherence to the guideline.

Methods: A cross-sectional study. GPs in the Central Denmark Region answered an online questionnaire in October 2017. The main outcome measure was modalities used in the management of sore throat patients.

Results: In total, 266 of 500 (53%) GPs answered the survey. Ten percent of participants were adherent or almost adherent to the guideline, while 82% of GPs added one or more extra modalities (general clinical assessment (67%), biochemical parameters (48%), and throat swabs for bacterial culture (18%)) to differentiate viral and bacterial etiology. Sixty-five percent of participants used the Centor Score or modified Centor Score, 96% of GPs used a streptococcal rapid antigen detection test, and all GPs chose narrow-spectrum penicillin as the first-line antibiotic. The most common reasons for non-adherence to the guideline were greater confidence in the clinical assessment (39%), time pressure (33%), and difficulty recalling the guideline (19%).

Conclusion: Danish GPs rarely adhere to the recommended sore throat management guideline, but use various combinations of different modalities in the assessment of bacterial infection. This practice may increase antibiotic prescription rates.

TidsskriftBMC Family Practice
Antal sider7
StatusUdgivet - 1 jun. 2019

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