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Community-onset Clostridium difficile linked to higher risk of surgery

Patients whose symptoms of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) start outside of the hospital setting have a higher risk of colectomy due to severe infection, according to a large multicenter study funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and published in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America.

Infection from C. difficile is associated with antibiotic use and results in colitis and diarrhea. Severe cases can be life-threatening. Colectomy, or surgical removal of most or all of the large intestine, is the treatment of choice for patients who have life-threatening CDI that does not respond to medical therapy. However, it is associated with a high risk of death in these very sick patients.

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