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How Effective Is Clindamycin for Strep?

By Emma Miller
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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The use of clindamycin for strep infection is typically effective at reducing complications for affected patients. Strep, otherwise known as streptococcus A, is a common cause of throat infections in adults and children. Clindamycin is generally used only if other treatments prove to be ineffective, or if the patient has a known allergy to more commonly used antibiotics.

There are many causes for a sore throat. One of the most common bacterial infections that can cause a sore throat is streptococcus A. Infection with strep usually leads to inflammation in the throat. Symptoms of infection include throat redness or pain, difficulty swallowing, fever, neck swelling, and white patches of pus that may sometimes coat the tonsils. Symptoms may be more severe in children than adults.

A lincosamide antibiotic, clindamycin is commonly used for certain types of bacterial infections. Clindamycin for strep is usually a stand-alone therapy. It is typically administered orally at a total dose of 45 milligrams (mg) per 2.2 lbs. (1 kilo) per day. This is usually split in four and given once every six to eight hours for five days. Other lincosamide antibiotics include lincomycin.

Streptococcus A infections usually have minimal complications. In some cases however, untreated strep infections can spread, causing pockets of bacteria to form in the throat, breathing difficulties, or rheumatic fever. Early diagnosis and treatment is important to avoid complications. A throat swab is commonly used to collect and culture cells from the affected area, which helps physicians make an accurate diagnosis. Results are typically available within a few minutes at a clinic or hospital that uses rapid antigen detection tests.

Various antibiotics may be used to treat strep infection, with penicillin being the most commonly prescribed drug. Patients who are allergic to penicillin may use clindamycin for strep. Some scientific studies indicate that the use of oral clindamycin for children with strep may be more effective than treatment with oral penicillin. This may be due to a slightly higher compliance observed in patients on clindamycin for strep, and the relatively short duration of treatment needed for clindamycin to work. As with all medications, intake of clindamycin has been associated with some side effects and these can include liver dysfunction, allergic reactions, joint pain, nausea, and diarrhea.

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Discussion Comments
By anon998017 — On Apr 01, 2017

I believe that electrical wiring defects in homes (or any building) can cause extremely high electromagnetic fields that interfere with the human body and how it works properly. See a book by Karl Riley on defective wiring and high EMFs. So as a precaution, don't go back home during these treatments, but go to a hotel and see if she improves on the antibiotics. I had a high EMF level in my house caused by a wiring defect (which was later fixed easily) -- my children who were exposed to the field in their bedroom/TV hang out room had health issues.

By anon337270 — On Jun 04, 2013

@anon330039: I don't know when your comment was posted but can you tell how your child feels these days? My son has strep also and now for over three weeks. His doctor gave him Clindamycin after other antibiotics didn't help. His problem is that every time he drinks or eats his strep causes vomiting. I really hope that Clindamycin helped your daughter.

By anon330039 — On Apr 13, 2013

My seven year old daughter was first diagnosed with strep throat about 45 days ago and has been treated with Amoxicillin, Omnicef, Amox Tr Cl, Azithromycin and now most recently on her fifth antibiotic, Clindamycin.

Each time we finished the antibiotic treatment, symptoms of fever returned within 48 hours. While on Amox Tr C, the fever symptoms were not even fully suppressed - low grade fevers continued throughout treatment. Her blood was taken and white blood cells high as expected and also Titers high as expected, meaning that she is in fact, fighting a strep infection.

I am praying to God that this treatment will work. She has been on it for 24 hours so far and she still has fevers of between 99.6-100.0. A first ENT specialist wanted to give her a strong penicillin shot or the Clindamycin as the fifth treatment, but had a horrible bedside manner and did not even offer to give the shot himself, but instead told me to get it from my regular pediatrician.

My pediatrician has never given the shot he indicated and did not even have it in stock.

The new ENT preferred the Clindamycin treatment and already indicated that if the Clindamycin does not work we will go for tonsil and adenoid removal. He feels we have tried so much and the child has had enough antibiotic treatments. Anyone who can shed light on why this would happen to an otherwise healthy child and if this is a good treatment are appreciated. All other household members have tested negative for strep with the full lab culture.

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