Introduction: Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) is a Gram-positive,
anaerobic rod-shaped bacteria, widely spread in the human environment.
In the last decade, the frequency and severity of Clostridium difficile
infection (CDI) have been increasing, making this particular disease one
of the most significant nosocomial infections. The aim of our study was
an analysis of CDI risk factors, its course and consequences.
Materials and Methods: Medical documentation of the patients treated for
CDI in the University Hospital in Cracow and St Anne’s Hospital in
Miechów has been analysed. The analysis focused on epidemiological data,
blood parameters, comorbidities, recurrence rate, and complication rate
(deaths included). As part of risk factors analysis, antibiotic use or
hospitalisation in a period of 3 months before the episode of infection
was considered relevant. Blood tests have been performed using routinely
employed, standard methods.
Results: We evaluated data of 168 people infected with C. difficile, out
of which there were 102 women (61%) and 66 men (39%). Th e median age of
the patients was 74 years for the entire population with 76 years for
women and 71 years for male patients. One hundred thirteen people (67%)
had been previously hospitalised, and 5 person was a pensioner of a
nursing home. 99 people (59%) were treated with antibiotics within 3
months before the first episode of infection. An average length of the
hospital stay because of CDI was 11 days. One hundred thirty persons
(77%) experienced only 1 episode whereas 38 people (23%) had more than 1
episode of infection. The person with the largest number of recurrences
had 9 of them.
Conclusions: The development of CDI is an increasing problem in a group
of hospitalised persons, particularly of an old age. The general use of
beta-lactam antibiotics is the cause of a larger number of infections
with C. diffi cile. Vast majority of patients have had at least one
typical risk factor of CDI development.