Antibiotics appear to have no benefit in treating acute laryngitis in adults

Clinical question: 
Should I use antibiotics to treat acute laryngitis in my adult patients?
Bottom line: 
Penicillin V and erythromycin appear to have no benefit in treating acute laryngitis in adults. Erythromycin reduced voice disturbance at one week (NNT = 4.5) and cough at 2 weeks when measured subjectively but there were no objective differences in outcomes between the intervention and control groups.
Caveat: 
The modest subjective benefits probably are outweighed by costs, adverse effects and negative consequences on antibiotic resistance patterns.
Context: 
Acute laryngitis commonly causes hoarseness, fever, sore throat, postnasal discharge and difficulty swallowing. These symptoms are usually self-limiting, and influenced by weather conditions.
Review CD#: 
CD004783
PEARLS No: 
29
Date: 
April, 2007
Authored by: 
Brian R McAvoy