Standard of Care and Predominant Risk Factor 2.0 update

Antibiotics: The Standard of Care for
C. difficile Infection

Is Also a Predominant Risk Factor for Recurrence

Icon of a pill

While antibiotics are the standard of care for the treatment of C. difficile infection, their use is also a predominant risk factor for recurrence.1-3 Up to 35% of patients will experience recurrence within 8 weeks after initial C. difficile infection diagnosis.4,5

Antibiotic use has been shown to disrupt the ecology of the human microbiome and is associated with increased risk of deadly infections such as recurrent C. difficile.6

Cycle of recurrence

Disruption of microbiota increases the risk of C. difficile infection by providing a niche for the infection to flourish. Should the intestinal microbiota be disrupted by antibiotics, the effects may be long-lasting and the risk of C. difficile infection may increase during continued therapy. Longer exposure to multiple antibiotics and treatment with multiple antibiotics may increase the risk.7

Thus starts a cycle of C. difficile infection and reinfection—impeding microbiome recovery, exacerbating morbidity, and creating a substantial economic burden.8

Restoring a healthy gut microbiome

Restoring a healthy gut microbiome is increasingly accepted as a promising treatment option for recurrent C. difficile infection.9