Clostridium Defficil

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Jaime Vonk
Med. Careers PCT 1
October 14, 2012

Clostridium Difficile

Clostridium difficile is a gram positive, spore forming anaerobic bacillus, which may or may not carry the genes for toxin A-B production. These two types of protein exotoxins produced by the Clostridium difficile bacillus, toxin A and toxin B, can have an infectious form and a non-active, non-infectious form. The disease spreads throughThe spores can survive for a longer period of time in the environment and are not infectious unless and until they are ingested or are transformed into an infectious state. The infectious form can survive for a short duration of time in the environment. Together, the two toxins cause a large number of inflammatory pacifiers to descend on the colon, triggering more colitis and colonic ulcerations. Purulent debris then results, contributing to the development of a pseudo membrane. With the activation of the inflammatory response, the released pacifiers cause fluid excretion and increased permeability at the mucosal membrane and make the patient susceptible to diarrhea as well as drastic electrolyte and fluid shifts. Symptoms caused by infection with Clostridium difficile range from mild diarrhea to profuse, watery diarrhea accompanied by severe inflammation of the intestine. The patient may complain of foul smelling diarrhea. Symptoms may also include lower abdominal pain and systemic symptoms such as fever, anorexia and nausea; malaise may be seen. Frank bleeding is rare, although fecal occult blood and leukocytes are frequently detected. Gross bloody stools are uncommon but present with fecal occult blood. People with a more severe Clostridium difficile infection will experience this symptom of having blood in their stools. They tend to have a fever, poor skin turgor, dry mucous membranes secondary to dehydration, and nausea. Clostridium difficile associated disease ranges from a mild to severe condition. In sever cases, large areas of the intestinal...
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