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C-Diff: Could a vaccine prevent this contagious killer?
Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Clostridium difficile (C-diff) is a bacterial infection that causes abdominal pain, fever and diarrhea. The symptoms may range from mild to severe and can lead to death. C-diff is the leading cause of gastroenteritis-associated death and was estimated to cause 14,000 deaths in 2007 in the United States according to the New England Journal of Medicine.

C-diff is highly contagious and can live on surfaces for up to 90 days. Only cleaners with chlorine bleach are effective in reducing the risk of contamination from C-diff infected surfaces. This bacterial infection seems to be more prevalent in females than males, higher among whites than nonwhites and there is a higher incidence in persons >65 years and older.

This same study in the New England Journal of Medicine noted health care associated C-diff infections more prevalent than community associated C-diff infections and it was estimated that 453,000 cases of C-diff occurred in 2011 in the United States. This study also concluded health care associated C-diff infections continue to be an ongoing issue with reoccurrence and death more common among health-care associated infections than community associated infections. However, most patients with C-diff had inpatient or outpatient health care exposure before onset of the infection. According to this study, the estimated death total from C-diff nationally in 2011 was 29,000 with the majority among patients with health care associated infections.

There are no cures for C-diff and treatment can include antibiotic therapy which may worsen the C-diff or as a last resort fecal transplant or surgery. Continued research needs to be done to find vaccinations and better treatment options for C-diff. Sterling Research is currently conducting a study to test a vaccination for this contagious bacterial infection. If you would like to learn more, please call our office and speak to a recruitment coordinator.

References: Lessa, F.C., Mu, Y., Bamberg, W.M., Beldavs, Z. G., Dumyati, G.K., Dunn, J.R., Farley, M.M., Holzbauer, S.M., Meek, J.I., Phipps, E.C., Wilson, L.E., Winston, L.G., Cohen, J.A., Limbago, B.M., Fridkin, S.K., Gerding, D.N., McDonald, L.C., The New England Journal of Medicine (February 26, 2015), Burden of Clostridium difficile Infection in the United States, 372;9
DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1408913

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Gout Increasingly Common Among Americans
Friday, September 8, 2017

Gout is a type of arthritis with both acute and chronic features. The problem is caused by too much uric acid in your blood stream. An acute flare occurs when the excess uric acid forms into crystals which deposit in a joint like your wrist, knee, ankle or most commonly the big toe.


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