Viruses are major causes of upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs). Yet, antibiotics are commonly prescribed for URTIs. Even if, the flu season is somewhat late this year, the question remains when it is safe not to prescribe antibiotics.
Point of care C-reactive protein (CRP) tests can be used to guide antibiotic prescribing
Point of care C-reactive protein (CRP) tests can be used to guide antibiotic prescribing for URTIs. In a study from 2020, where pathogen specific test results were compared with CRP results obtained with QuikRead go CRP, influenza and rhinovirus were the most common viruses. The study concluded that a mildly raised CRP level of 6–20 mg/L was more likely to be associated with a viral than non-viral URTI, although a higher CRP level of 21–40 mg/L was more suggestive of an influenza infection. Point of care CRP tests could provide clinical decision support for antibiotic use in uncomplicated URTIs. See our point of care CRP test portfolio from www.aidian.eu.
- A. Chow et al. C-Reactive Protein (CRP) levels in influenza and other respiratory viral infections. Virology and viral infections / International Journal of Infectious Diseases 101(S1) (2021) 518–9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijid.2020.09.1345