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SHEA neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) white paper series: Practical approaches to Clostridioides difficile prevention (Endorsed)

Published ,


This white paper provides clinicians with practical advice related to Clostridioides difficile in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) patients. Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) is among the most prevalent and important healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) affecting children1,2 but reports of CDI in infants<12 months of age are rare, perhaps because of a relative resistance to the effects of C. difficile toxins or other protective factors in the intestinal environment of infants.3 Additionally, high colonization rates in infants (~35%) make interpretation of positive C. difficile tests in NICU patients uniquely challenging. For these reasons, the authors do not recommend routine testing for C. difficile in NICU patients; NICU patients should be evaluated for other more common causes of diarrhea. Few data exist in the published literature about preventing C. difficile in the NICU in endemic settings.

For more information, please visit the Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology Journal.


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