These organisms can survive on dry environmental surfaces from several hours to years and serve as a source of hand, glove and clothing contamination. Facility environmental cleaning policies should take into account that studies have shown shedding of C. diff bacteria up to 6 weeks after resolution of diarrhea.
difficile is shed in feces, any surface or device that becomes contaminated with feces can serve as a reservoir for C. difficile spores [3–5]. C. difficile spores resist desiccation for months and can persist on hard surfaces for as long as 5 months [2, 6, 7].
Overall, Clorox, Cidex OPA, and Virex were most effective at killing C. diff spores. Clorox and OPA were also effective at killing total vegetative cell growth, the cellular stage responsible for causing infections. Virex was found to be ineffective against vegetative cell growth in biofilms.
It’s OK to take clothes to a dry cleaner that were worn by a patient infected with C. diff. However, dry cleaning isn’t as effective as other methods at killing the spores. So this option should be used only for clothes that can’t be machine- washed.
Clorox Germicidal Wipes are now EPA-registered to reduce the transmission of and kill C. difficile spores (supported by clinical studies), and a total of 51 microorganisms in 3 minutes or less. Trusted by more hospitals than any other bleach wipe for killing C. difficile spores.
Q: When do we put a resident on isolation when we suspect a Clostridium difficile ( C. diff ) infection, and when can we remove the isolation? A: Residents should be placed on contact precautions while they are experiencing diarrhea. Wait to discontinue precautions until the diarrhea resolves.
There is a slight chance of spreading C. difficile to your spouse. Wash your hands well before and after contact with each other.
There is a slight chance of spreading C. difficile to a family member, especially if one is sick. Cleaning your hands well before and after contact with each other will help prevent the spread of C.
People with Clostridium difficile infections typically recover within two weeks of starting antibiotic treatment. However, many people become reinfected and need additional therapy. Most recurrences happen one to three weeks after stopping antibiotic therapy, although some occur as long as two or three months later.
C. diff spores can live outside the human body for a very long time and are found frequently in hospitals, nursing homes and on items such as toilet seats, linens, telephones, floors, bed rails, bathroom fixtures, and medical equipment.
The new study shows that donor stool transplantation effectively cured 90 percent of patients’ recurrent C. diff infections. Transplanting donor stool is effective because it replaces the good bowel flora that was killed off by the use of antibiotics and naturally combats the invasive bacterium.
The study team identified the probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri as a candidate for adjunct therapy to be used with antibiotics such as vancomycin, metronidazole, and fidaxomicin against C. difficile.
Wash your hands frequently, especially after using the bathroom. Clean the bathrooms regularly with the proper products; hydrogen peroxide wipes have proven to be most effective against C. diff. Remove and dispose of any soiled materials immediately; do not try to save them.
Introduce Friendly Bacteria Foods that contain probiotics will help repopulate the gut with good bacteria and reduce the risk of regrowth of C diff. Probiotic bacteria are found in yogurt and other fermented foods.
A child or an adult with C. diff should be excluded from school or work if they are febrile and symptomatic or diarrhea cannot be contained. People who provide patient care should consult with their facility’s policy on returning to work.