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a diagnostic test is now available at pharmacies



9 million French people have angina every year. In 50-90% of cases, the disease, characterized by infection of the tonsils, is caused by a virus, in which case antibiotics are useless. Even so, generalists often prescribe them as a precautionary principle. Therefore, in order to combat antibiotic resistance and break off waiting rooms, avoiding patients going to the doctor for nothing, rapid diagnostic angiagnosis (TROD) test pharmacists are now viable for 1 euro HT of 1stOctober 2019. I as of January 1, 2020, these tests will be offset by social protection.

Issued free of charge to doctors since 2002, this test allows a pharmacist to make a sample in the throat of a patient with a type of cotton swab. Then simply dip the swab into the reagent, which will change color depending on the nature of the disease. Five to ten minutes later, we know whether the test is negative (viral angina) or positive (bacterial or streptococcal angina).

In the first case, antibiotics are useless and do not alleviate the symptoms. If viral angina is usually cured, you can still suck on ice cream to relieve the symptoms or take paracetamol or aspirin if you have high fever or migraines. If strep throat is drowsy, it is still advisable to see a doctor who prescribes amoxicillin for the first intention on the first day (except in the case of an allergy).

The test is underused by doctors, the government says

Three years ago, this test was useless because angina is almost always viral, health authorities remind. In addition, despite the negative test, some patients at higher risk of rheumatic fever (ARI), who are susceptible to recurrent streptococcus strep or returning from endemic country, may be offered a throat for greater safety.

With this new measure, the government hopes the test will be conducted more frequently. Only 40% of GPs ordered it for free in 2017. "About 10% of antibiotic prescriptions are for angina treatment (9 million cases every year), while 80% of angina is due to a virus. So, they do not require antibiotics," laments Matignon, recalling that excessive consumption of antibiotics contributes to the development of antimicrobial resistance, which is a major public health problem.

In fact, in a surveillance report conducted in 114 countries in 2014, the WHO put together an alarming report: benign infections could kill again for lack of effective antibiotics. Many researchers are currently working on the topic, trying, for example, to implement natural viruses called bacteriophages to infect and kill bacteria.

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