The Editorial Executive Committee welcomes letters, which should be less than 250 words. Before a decision to publish is made, letters which refer to a published article may be sent to the author for a response. Any letter may be sent to an expert for comment. When letters are published, they are usually accompanied in the same issue by their responses or comments. The Committee screens out discourteous, inaccurate or libellous statements. The letters are sub-edited before publication. Authors are required to declare any conflicts of interest. The Committee's decision on publication is final.

Letter to the Editor

Editor, – I read the dental note (Aust Prescr 2010;33:71) about not using amoxycillin as the first drug of choice for oral infection to reduce the prevalence of multiresistant bacteria, for example life-threatening Streptococcus pneumoniae.

I am a dentist and we have always been told that amoxycillin is the best and safest antimicrobial when encountering oral infection. So what will be the next best thing?

Shahriar Sanati
Dentist, Sydney

Author's comments

Associate Professor Michael McCullough, Chair, Therapeutics Committee, Australian Dental Association, comments:

Dentists were once told that amoxycillin was the best and safest antibiotic for most dental infections. However, this idea has been considerably challenged over the past several decades leading to the current concept that penicillin is the best choice as first option. These concepts are clearly outlined in the Therapeutic Guidelines: Oral and Dental. Unfortunately, there is likely not going to be a 'next best thing', so we need to use our currently available antibiotics judiciously.