The proper medical name for it is Clostridioides difficile (once called Clostridium difficile). But you may have heard about it as its simplified name: C. diff (or C. difficile.) Every year, it infects almost half a million Americans. While it can cause serious illness, it is also responsible for about 15,000 fatalities per year, adds the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
While C. diff can affect people of all ages, it is especially dangerous among seniors in nursing homes. However, there are effective ways to manage the illness, ranging from taking doctor-prescribed antibiotics to ensuring proper hydration. Here’s everything you should know about C. diff…
What Exactly Is C. Diff?
According to Healthline, C. diff is an infectious bacterium that results in a condition called Clostridium difficile colitis. You might recognize colitis as an inflammatory disorder of the colon, and you’d be right.
The colitis resulting from C. diff can be moderate to severe and have a range of symptoms including abdominal pain, fever, and more, which we’ll get into more soon.