Rating Feedback for Dr. Maresky (1294054)
'Our son was running a fever of 102-104 for several days. It was mis-diagnosed as a "virus" when in fact it was strep throat. The doctor used an "instant strep test" which was negative and indicated it was 99% accurate. After researching this, the instant tests are 50% accurate and a culture should have been taken for the lab. The misdiagnosis resulted in the strep infection turning into severe Pneumonia which is taking weeks to reocover from. Very disappointing.'
This is why the internet makes practicing medicine so difficult. Nowadays every idiot "knows" medicine. I am a Pulmonologist and your internet research has led you astray. I suggest that you focus your "research" away from wikipedia and actually read the literature of scholarly journal articles regarding the rapid strep test. Let me just address 2 points here: 1 - The rapid strep test is expensive and comes out of the doctors pocket. So perhaps a thank you was in order. 2 - There are literally dozens of scholarly journal articles in journals ranging from the new england journal of med to the pediatric infectious disease journal which support the use of the rapid strep test as MORE accurate. In fact, the one caveat of the rapid test is the 2% chance of a false positive. Keep in mind that a false positive is an error whereby the result is more likely to be positive even when it should be negative, essentially erring on the side of caution and keeping you "better safe than sorry". Assuming you haven't the time to go to medical school, at least do your due diligence and learn to read, here are a couple of articles to get you started (I copy/pasted them at the bottom), enjoy! All I can say is i'm happy you aren't one of my patients! I have the utmost respect for Dr. Maresky, he is truly a giant in his field and i will continue to refer patients to him and regard him in the highest esteem as the most knowledgable and conscientious pediatrician in the country (also the best neonatologist i know, he ran the NICU like a well-oiled machine for years!)
This article in the journal of family medicine (http://www.jabfm.com/content/15/4/261.short) states that "We found that the rapid strep test in this setting showed no difference in specificity (0.96 vs 0.98); hence, the assertion that rapid antigen testing had higher false-positive rates in those with recent infection was not confirmed. We also found that in patients who had recent streptococcal pharyngitis, the rapid strep test appears to be more reliable (0.91 vs 0.70, P < .001) than in those patients who had not had recent streptococcal pharyngitis." This is from medicinenet (http://www.medicinenet.com/rapid_strep_test/page3.htm): "The rapid strep test has a 98% specificity. This means that 98 of 100 positive tests correctly indicate the presence specifically of Group A streptococcus bacteria; 2 of 100 positive results are "false positives" - indicative of similarities between various surface proteins found on strep bacteria and other non-strep bacteria found in the mouth."