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Transpl Infect Dis. 2016 Oct;18(5):706-713. doi: 10.1111/tid.12584. Epub 2016 Sep 16.

Frequency and risks associated with Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea after pediatric solid organ transplantation: a single-center retrospective review.

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Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.



Morbidity and mortality related to Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) has increased, but epidemiology and risk factors within pediatric solid organ transplant (SOT) recipients are uncertain.


A retrospective cohort study of SOT recipients age ≤18 years at transplantation from 2010 to 2013 was performed. Patients with CDI were compared with matched CDI-negative controls with diarrhea.


Of 202 patients, the majority were male (58%) and Caucasian (77%). Kidney (42%) was the most common organ transplanted, followed by liver (38%), heart (17%), and multivisceral/intestine (3%). Age ranged from 3 weeks to 18 years (median 4.7 years, mean 6.6; interquartile range [IQR] 1.5-11.2). In 104 SOT recipients, at least 1 unformed stool was tested; 25 patients were positive for CDI. Most testing occurred by 60 days post transplant (mean 164, median 57, IQR 14-227). First negative tests occurred concurrently (mean 153, median 54, IQR 13-214) to the 25 patients with CDI (mean 199, median 65, IQR 32-238). In univariable analyses, age, gender, ethnicity, obesity, and calcineurin inhibitor choice were not associated with CDI. Liver recipients were more likely to have CDI (18.4% liver, 4.7% kidney, 8.8% heart, P < 0.01). Twenty CDI patients were matched to 35 controls. In multivariable analyses, neither recent hospitalization nor antibiotic duration or intensity was associated with CDI. Acid-blockade appeared protective (risk ratio 0.13, 95% confidence interval 0.02-0.78).


CDI occurs in 12% of pediatric SOT recipients, but 24% of those tested with diarrhea were positive. In patients with diarrhea, prior hospitalization and antibiotic duration or intensity were not associated with CDI.


Clostridium difficile ; diarrhea; pediatric transplantation; risk factors

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