Clostridium Difficile: bacterium that can cause symptoms ranging from diarrhea to life-threatening inflammation of the colon. Most commonly affects older adults in hospitals or nursing homes and typically occurs after use of antibiotic medications. Recently C. Diff has become more severe and difficult to treat. Healthy people can get C.Diff even if they aren’t taking antibiotic or hospitalized. It is possible to not be sick while having C.Diff but still possible to spread the infection. Symptoms of C.Diff
Watery diarrhea 10 to 15 times a day, abdominal cramping and pain, fever, blood or pus in stool, nausea, C. Diff can be found in the environment: air, soil, and water, human and animal feces. C. Diff is passed in feces, spread to food, surfaces and objects when people who are infected don’t wash their hands thoroughly. This bacteria produces spores that can live up to six months on a surface. So if you touch a surface contaminated with C.Diff you can unknowingly ingest the bacteria. Healthy people usually don’t get sick from C.Diff. Your intestines contain millions of natural bacteria that help protect you from getting infections. When you take an antibiotic for infection it kills good and bad bacteria. If there isn’t enough “good” bacteria the C.Diff can quickly grow out of control. Common antibiotics that cause C.Diff are Penicillins, Fluoroquinolones, cephalosporins, and clindamycin. C.Diff can produce toxins that will attack the lining of the intestine, causing inflammation which will result in bleeding. Common C.Diff “hiding spots”
Hands, cart handles, bedrails, bedside tables, toilets, sinks, stethoscopes, thermometers, telephones, remote controls, call bells. Prevention
* Hand washing: before and after treating each resident. Warm water and soap is better choice than sanitizer because C.Diff is a spore, the alcohol will not kill the spore completely. * Contact precautions: Wear gloves and disposable gowns when likely to...
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