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J Clin Microbiol. 1981 Jul;14(1):26-31.

Relative frequency of Clostridium difficile in patients with diarrheal disease.


We have studied 161 patients with diarrheal disease to determine the frequency with which Clostridium difficile occurs in such patients. C. difficile or its toxin or both were detected in stools from 19 patients (11.9%), 17 of whom had previously received antimicrobial agents. Enteric pathogens other than C. difficile were recovered less frequently, with Salmonella sp., Giardia lamblia, and Campylobacter fetus being recovered from 4.1, 2.5, and 1.3%, respectively, of the patients studied. These data suggest that C. difficile may be frequently encountered in specimens obtained from patients with diarrhea who receive antibiotics and may play a role in diarrheal disease in such patients.

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