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Clostridioides difficile, also known as C. diff, is a germ that can cause diarrhea. The most common symptoms of a C. diff infection include:
The elderly and people with certain medical problems have the greatest chance of getting C. diff. Most cases of C. diff occur in persons who have recently been treated with antibiotics for another infection. Antibiotics can reduce the number of friendly bacteria that live in the intestines and help keep us healthy. This allows for any C. diff bacteria present in the intestines to multiply and cause illness.
C. diff spores can live outside the human body for a very long time and may be found on things in the environment such as bed linens, bed rails, bathroom fixtures, and medical equipment. C. diff infection can spread from person-to-person on contaminated equipment and on the unwashed hands of persons providing care to someone with C. diff infection.
Yes, there are antibiotics that can be used to treat C. diff. Your doctor will discuss your treatment with you.
Doctors, nurses, and other health care providers:
C. diff infection usually does not occur in persons who are not taking antibiotics. Visitors are not likely to get C. diff. Still, to make it safer for visitors, they should:
If you are given a prescription to treat C. diff, take the medicine exactly as prescribed by your doctor and pharmacist. Do not take half-doses or stop before you run out.
In addition, tell your doctor that you have been diagnosed with a C. diff infection. If you take medication for acid reflux or heartburn, ask your doctor if you can stop taking it for a little while. Medications for acid reflux and heartburn can increase your risk for another C. diff infection. Remind your doctor that you have C. diff if you are prescribed antibiotics for a different infection.
If you cannot use bleach to clean certain surfaces, use the household cleaner you normally use, clean the surface thoroughly, and allow it to air dry.
WakeMed has multiple emergency departments and urgent care locations throughout Wake County to better serve you. Find the emergency department or urgent care closest to you.
3000 New Bern Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27610