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versión impresa ISSN 0120-4157


CARVAJAL, Carlos; PACHECO, Carlos  y  JAIMES, Fabián. Clinical and demographic profile and risk factors for Clostridium difficile infection. Biomédica [online]. 2017, vol.37, n.1, pp.53-61. ISSN 0120-4157.


Clostridium difficile infection is the leading cause of nosocomial infectious diarrhea. The increasing incidence added to a lower rate of response to the initial treatment and higher rates of relapse has generated a higher burden of the disease.


To determine the clinical characteristics of hospitalized patients with C. difficile infection.

Materials and methods:

We made a nested case-cohort study. We reviewed medical records of the patients with nosocomial diarrhea for whom an assay for toxin A-B of C. difficile had been requested from February, 2010, to February, 2012. We defined case as a patient with diarrhea and a positive assay for the toxin, and control as those patients with a negative assay for the toxin. We collected data on demographic and clinical characteristics, risk factors, hospital length of stay, treatment, and complications.


We collected data from 123 patients during the follow-up period, 30 of whom were positive for the toxin. Mean age in the study population was 49 years and 60% were men. The main symptoms were abdominal pain (35%) and fever (34%). The principal complications were electrolytic alteration and severe sepsis with secondary acute kidney injury. Mortality was 13% and independent factors associated to the appearance of the infection were the use of proton pump inhibitors and previous gastrointestinal tract surgery.


The use of proton pump inhibitors and previous gastrointestinal tract surgery were factors associated to C. difficile infection.

Palabras clave : Clostridium difficile; epidemiology; dysentery; anti-bacterial agents; risk factors; cross infection.

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