Early Symptom Identification, Diagnosis and Treatment Strategies for Clostridium Difficile Infection Acquired During Hospitalization in Adults Ages 18 and Over
Sloot, Sarena L.
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Clostridium difficile acquired infection (CDI) is a significant cause of morbidity and mortality for hospitalized patients in the United States, as well as a large financial burden for both patients and healthcare facilities. Evidence based practice recommendations currently focus on preventative measures such as contact precautions, environmental decontamination, and antimicrobial stewardship in order to prevent horizontal transmission, however there are few available strategies that allow healthcare providers to promptly identify, diagnose, and treat patients with CDI early in the disease process. Recommendations for areas of research include clearly defining patient symptoms to trigger provider suspicion of CDI, streamlining diagnostic testing modalities, standardizing pharmacologic treatment interventions, and exploring the role of alternative preventative therapies such as monoclonal antibodies and bio-therapeutics. Through early symptom identification strategies, diagnostic testing modalities, and evidence based treatment recommendations, providers can decrease patient morbidity and mortality and improve overall outcomes.