4 independent patient risk factors for acquiring C. diff

A study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases examined risk factors for Clostridium difficile transmission using whole-genome sequencing.

Researchers conducted a 20-month retrospective cohort study that involved consecutive cytotoxin-positive diarrheal samples undergoing culture, ribotyping and whole-genome sequencing. Of 660 C. diff cases, 640 were sequenced.

Researchers found that of the 640 cases, 89 percent shared a ribotype with a prior case. Additionally, the study identified independent risk factors for C. diff acquisition:

• Older age
• Longer inpatient duration
• Ribotype
• Male sex

"Clinical characteristics associated with increased healthcare-associated CD transmission could be used to target preventative interventions," study authors wrote.

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