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Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2013 Dec;14(17):2375-86. doi: 10.1517/14656566.2013.838218. Epub 2013 Sep 22.

Therapy of Clostridium difficile infection: perspectives on a changing paradigm.

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St. Johns' Health Center, Department of Pharmacy , Santa Monica, CA 90404 , USA.



Clostridium difficile disease (CDI) have increased in frequency and severity over the past decade and are a leading cause of hospital acquired infections, contributing to increased hospital length of stay and costs, as well as associated increased mortality, especially amongst the elderly. Standard therapy has been associated with 20 - 30% relapse rates. Consequently, new CDI therapeutic approaches have emerged.


The role of metronidazole, vancomycin, fidaxomicin, rifaximin, nitizoxanide, tigecycline, fusidic acid, LFF-571, cardazolid, SMT 19969, CamSA and surotomycin were reviewed.


New IDSA/SHEA guidelines are expected within the next year and may impact selection of primary therapy for CDI. Until then, metronidazole will likely remain as first line therapy because of low cost and despite its inferiority compared to vancomycin. Vancomycin will likely see increasing use, especially as generics become available. Fidaxomicin will emerge as an important therapy for relapse patients and perhaps as initial therapy for patients at greatest risk for relapse, with concomitant antibiotics, multiple comorbidities and renal insufficiency, advanced age and hypoalbuminemia. Biotherapeutics such as fecal microbiota transplantation and non-toxogenic C. difficile prevention will emerge as the preferred therapy in multiple relapse patients and the development of an oral formulation will occur within five years.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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