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Randomised controlled trial
Clinical failure is more common in young children with acute otitis media who receive a short course of antibiotics compared with standard duration
  1. Roderick P Venekamp1,
  2. Anne G M Schilder2
  1. 1Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  2. 2Department of evidENT, Ear Institute, University College London and Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to: Dr Roderick P Venekamp, University Medical Center Utrecht, Heidelberglaan 100, Utrecht 3584 CX, The Netherlands; R.P.Venekamp{at}umcutrecht.nl

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Context

Acute otitis media (AOM) is a leading cause of doctor consultations and antibiotic prescriptions in young children.1 Strategies to reduce antibiotic prescribing for AOM and thereby the emerging spread of antimicrobial resistance have focused on watchful waiting and delayed prescription, in particular in children over 2 years.2 An alternative strategy to combat antimicrobial resistance is to reduce the duration of antibiotic treatment. So far, the evidence to support this strategy in young children with AOM has been incomplete.3

Methods

Hoberman and colleagues recruited 520 children from an academic children's hospital and affiliated paediatric practices and a private paediatric research practice in the USA. Children were aged 6–23 months and diagnosed with AOM based on the …

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