C. Diff

1622 Words7 Pages
Clostridium Difficile
Ebony G Williams
Hodges University

MLS 2500
Professor Christine Sanders
April 6, 2011

Clostridium Difficile is now considered to be one the most important causes of health care-associated infections. C. diff infections are also emerging in the community and in animals used for food, and are no longer viewed simply as unpleasant complications that follow antibiotic therapy. Since 2001, the prevalence and severity of C. diff infection has increased significantly, which has led to research on C. diff. This research summarizes C. diff background, causes, symptoms, infection occurs, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. This will give the reader some type of aspect about C.diff.

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In 1970’s researches demonstrated 21% of patients treated with antibiotic clindamycin (Cleocin) reported diarrhea; 10% of the study population developed pseudomembranous colitis as a consequence of this treatment (). By the later 1970’s, C. diff had been recognized as the infectious cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and colitis ().
What is the cause of C. diff and how does it affects the colon? In the colon, the C. diff spores are present in the active form. There are several different bacteria that typically reside in the colon and are part of the normal flora of the colon (). These bacteria prevent the activation of C. diff spores into the active bacterial form (). However, when antibiotics are administered for the treatment of an infection, they may kill some of the normal bacteria. This process disrupts the normal balance of gut bacteria and allows Clostridium difficile to become activated and infectious (). When C. diff becomes activated, it produces two different toxins, toxin A and B. These toxins may cause inflammation of the inner lining of the colon, resulting in pooling of white blood cells in the colon. If the inflammation is severe, it can result in destruction of the normal cells that line the inside of the colon. When these cells are destroyed they shed, and a large number of white blood cells may appear as small whitish membranes when visualized by colonoscopy (). These membranes are

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