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Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 916826, 9 pages
Review Article

Clostridium difficile Infection: Epidemiology, Pathogenesis, Risk Factors, and Therapeutic Options

1Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Science, Tehran, Iran
2Department of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, Pasteur Institute of Iran (IPI), No. 358, 12th Farwardin Avenue, Jomhhoori Street, Tehran 1316943551, Iran
3Department of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences, Tabriz, Iran

Received 12 February 2014; Accepted 11 May 2014; Published 1 June 2014

Academic Editor: Joaquim Ruiz Blazquez

Copyright © 2014 Mehdi Goudarzi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The incidence and mortality rate of Clostridium difficile infection have increased remarkably in both hospital and community settings during the last two decades. The growth of infection may be caused by multiple factors including inappropriate antibiotic usage, poor standards of environmental cleanliness, changes in infection control practices, large outbreaks of C. difficile infection in hospitals, alteration of circulating strains of C. difficile, and spread of hypervirulent strains. Detection of high-risk populations could be helpful for prompt diagnosis and consequent treatment of patients suffering from C. difficile infection. Metronidazole and oral vancomycin are recommended antibiotics for the treatment of initial infection. Current treatments for C. difficile infection consist of supportive care, discontinuing the unnecessary antibiotic, and specific antimicrobial therapy. Moreover, novel approaches include fidaxomicin therapy, monoclonal antibodies, and fecal microbiota transplantation mediated therapy. Fecal microbiota transplantation has shown relevant efficacy to overcome C. difficile infection and reduce its recurrence.