Originally Posted by gcgirl
There are a couple strains of strep that can cause rheumatic fever; not all of them do. That's the only strain you actually NEED to treat with abx, and you can ask the doc to test for the strain. But abx can help relieve the discomfort of all strep.
I have wondered about this. I did a lot of research on strep last year, and I had a doctor tell me that the GAS strains that cause scarlet fever do not cause rheumatic fever. So I emailed 2 top strep researchers, and they both said, no it is not that clear cut, that strains that can cause scarlet fever can also be rheumatogenic. This is important information, because strep is so common, and I know that everyone on this thread has been in support of abx for strep, but abx are not always benign. My ds had significant gut effects that I am still working on healing a year later after only one course of abx for strep. And he has had no other abx ever in his life.
So, can you tell me how I could find out how to be tested for the particular strain, because that would be really helpful for people to know. If one could avoid abx by knowing that info, that would be great. Strep throat is actually a self-limiting illness, and in most cases it will clear on its own in 7-10 days. The only reason they give abx for it is because there is the rare complication of rheumatic fever, though that rarely happens in the US anymore, and some postulate that it is because the strains here have gotten weaker. I don't know about that, but it is true that incidences of rheumatic fever were already declining before the availability of abx for strep.
However, the abx he is receiving is only a 5-day abx, with a double dose on the first day, and he has already likely had four doses, since the first dose was probably a loading dose. So, I would call your doctor and ask him what to do at this point, given that he's already had so much of the abx, but not all. That particular antibiotic stays in your system for a longer period of time than the cillins, which is why it can be given for a shorter duration.