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Infectious Diseases

C-diff

05/23/2006

Question:

What info can you share with me on the so called c-diff disease?

Answer:

Clostridium difficile, or C. difficile (a gram-positive anaerobic bacterium), is now recognized as the major causative agent of colitis (inflammation of the colon) and diarrhea that may occur following antibiotic intake. C. difficile infection represents one of the most common hospital (nosocomial) infections around the world. In the United States alone, it causes approximately three million cases of diarrhea and colitis per year. This bacterium is primarily acquired in hospitals and chronic care facilities following antibiotic therapy covering a wide variety of bacteria (broad-spectrum) and is the most frequent cause of outbreaks of diarrhea in hospitalized patients. One of the main characteristics of C. difficile-associated colitis is severe inflammation in the colonic tissue (mucosa) associated with destruction of cells of the colon (colonocytes). 

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Response by:

Pamposh   Kaul, MD Pamposh Kaul, MD
Assistant Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati