• In order to devise a strategy for the management of acute pharyngitis, the clinical features of 418 adults with sore throat were noted and throat cultures were obtained. Patients with cultures positive for group A β-hemolytic streptococci had a significantly higher (P≤.01) frequency of recent exposure to streptococcal infection, pharyngeal exudate, enlarged or tender cervical nodes, and high fever (≧38.3 C [101 F]). Patients with negative cultures complained more frequently of cough. On the basis of these symptoms and signs, a clinical algorithm was developed and discriminant function scores were computed that identify patient populations with different probabilities of having streptococcal pharyngitis. The patients with moderate and high probabilities included 91% of patients with positive cultures but only 67% of the total patient population. These methods could be the basis for more efficient evaluation of adults with sore throat.
(Arch Intern Med 135:1493-1497, 1975)