Asymptomatic makes no difference in spread of C. diff, study shows

Rooms of patients who are carrying Clostridioides difficile but are not showing symptoms of infection are as contaminated as rooms of patients who are actively suffering from C. diff infections, according to a study published in Clinical Microbiology and Infection.

Israeli researchers conducted the study in the inpatient setting. They gathered specimens from 10 sites in 117 patient rooms.

Of the 117 rooms, 70 were inhabited by asymptomatic C. diff carriers, and 30 rooms were occupied by active C. diff patients. The remaining 17 were inhabited control patients, that is, non-C. diff carriers.

Researchers found that 41 percent of C. diff carrier rooms and 40 percent of C. diff patient rooms had more than residual C. diff contamination. Twenty-four percent of carrier rooms and 10 percent of patient rooms were heavily contaminated with C. diff.

The contamination score of rooms occupied by carriers did not differ from rooms of patients, but both were significantly more contaminated than rooms of non-carriers.

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