Cookie policy: This site uses cookies (small files stored on your computer) to simplify and improve your experience of this website. Cookies are small text files stored on the device you are using to access this website. For more information please take a look at our terms and conditions. Some parts of the site may not work properly if you choose not to accept cookies.

Join

Subscribe or Register

Existing user? Login

Clostridium difficile: microbiology and infection

By Luke S P Moore, MSc, FRCPath, Nick Cooley, DipClinPharm, and Mark Gilchrist, MSc, MRPharmS

Clostridium difficileThe bacterium Clostridium difficile was first described in 1935, but its role as a human pathogen was not discovered until 1978, when it was identified as being responsible for cases of pseudomembranous colitis.1,2

Summary

Clostridium difficile is a Gram-positive anaerobic bacterium that produces spores. It is a common cause of healthcare-associated infection. Although C difficile infection (CDI) can be asymptomatic, clinical manifestations range from mild diarrhoea through to pseudomembranous colitis and toxic megacolon.

Risk factors for the development of CDI include antimicrobial exposure, current or recent hospital admission, age (it is more common in people over 65 years of age) and proton pump inhibitor use. Healthcare organisations must have strategies in place to manage patients with CDI.

Luke S P Moore is specialist registrar in microbiology and infectious diseases and Mark Gilchrist is consultant pharmacist in infection, both at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. Nick Cooley is lead clinical pharmacist for anti-infectives at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

E:?luke.moore@imperial.nhs.uk

Citation: Clinical Pharmacist URI: 11107951

Have your say

For commenting, please login or register as a user and agree to our Community Guidelines. You will be re-directed back to this page where you will have the ability to comment.

Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press

RPS publications

Pharmaceutical Press is the publishing division of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, and is a leading provider of authoritative pharmaceutical information used throughout the world.

Visit rpharms.com

Search an extensive range of the world’s most trusted resources

Powered by MedicinesComplete
  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save
  • Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF

Supplementary information

Newsletter Sign-up

Want to keep up with the latest news, comment and CPD articles in pharmacy and science? Subscribe to our free alerts.