How does Clostridium difficile (C diff) infection (CDI) affect different age groups?

Updated: Jul 25, 2019
  • Author: Faten N Aberra, MD, MSCE; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Answer

CDI is more common in elderly people, and old age may promote susceptibility to colonization and disease. Cross-infection by C difficile is common in neonatal units, but neonates do not seem to develop C difficile –associated diarrhea. More recently, there have been specific populations affected by C difficile that were previously believed to be at low risk, such as young, healthy persons not exposed to a hospital environment or antimicrobial therapy and young women in a peripartum setting.

A study by Nylund et al suggested an increase in CDI among hospitalized children, especially in those with medical conditions such as IBD and immunosuppression. [35] Also at risk are individuals hospitalized with conditions that require antibiotic administration.


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