LAS VEGAS—A stay in the hospital may not be the only way to acquire Clostridium difficile diarrhea—but the potentially life-threatening infection may be associated with a number of health complications in hospitalized children, according to the findings from two studies unveiled recently. In a separate case report also presented recently, fecal microbiota transplantation in a 20-month old with recurrent Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) suggests the therapeutic potential fecal bacteriotherapy in pediatric patients who fail standard therapy for CDI.
In one study, researchers from Sinai Hospital in Baltimore retrospectively analyzed the changing epidemiological trends of patients with Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea (CDAD) who were admitted to an acute care hospital between January 2005 and December 20120. The results of their analysis, “Changing Epidemiology of Clostridium difficile-Associated Diarrhea (CDAD) Among Long-Term Care Facility Patients," suggest a changing shift in the way CDAD is acquired—from a traditional hospital-acquired infection to a community and long-term-care facility-based infection.
For the study, CDAD was defined as having clinical signs and symptoms of Clostridium difficile infection and a positive c. difficile stool toxin assay. The patients in the study were divided into three groups: nosocomial (hospital-acquired); long-term-care facility (LTCF); and community-acquired. Of the 258 toxin-positive CDAD patients in the analysis, 53 (20.6 percent) were nosocomial (hospital acquired); 119 were LTCF (46.1 percent) and 86 (33.3 percent) were in the community. The mean age for LTCF patients was higher than the other groups. Presenting symptoms were divided into diarrhea and non-diarrheal symptoms including fever, abdominal pain, and altered mental status. According to the results, the incidence of acute diarrhea was significantly lower in LTCF (18) patients as compared to patients from community (25).