What is C. diff?
Clostridium Difficile is a spore-forming bacteria that causes between 500,000 and Three Million infections in the United States per year. 29,000 of the people who developed a C. diff infection died within the first 30 days.
C. difficile is spread through fecal-oral transmission, and fecal-membrane transmission. Examples: poor hand washing after using the bathroom and then preparing food. Or, going to the grocery store, touching a grocery cart handle that is contaminated with Clostridium difficile bacteria and then rubbing your nose or eyes.
C. diff primarily associated with recent antibiotic use, and is prevalent in long-term care facilities and hospitals. Unfortunately, it is becoming more common in non-healthcare settings and has also become a "community acquired infection".
Pediatric C. diff infections are also on the rise. Yet, it is difficult for physicians to establish exactly how many children are suffering from C. diff infections as many young children are asymptomatic carriers (The American Academy of Pediatrics places the number at around 1 in 3 babies).
How can I protect my family from C. diff Infections?
Do not take unnecessary antibiotics. According to the CDC 1 in 3 antibiotic prescriptions are unnecessary. If your care provider feels that an antibiotic is truly necessary to treat a bacterial infection make sure to take a high quality probiotic with your prescription.
How can I help?
Visit the Peggy Lilis Foundation to learn more about C. diff Infections and how you can make a difference.