First C-Diff Infection - any suggestions or thoughts?

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champagnekindofgal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 221
   Posted 6/27/2010 5:55 PM (GMT -7)   
Had weaned off prednisone and all hell broke lose ... abd pain, D, mouth and esphogeal sores ... back on prednisone while GI doc did stool cultures. Just came back positive for C-Diff ... going to the pharmacy now for Flagyl. 
 
Anyone else dealt with this?  Do you think I caught it when I was in the hospital for an obstruction in Jan? 
 
ARGH!  But at least I don't have to go on more prednisone! Down to 5 mg now!
44-single mom diagnosed with Crohn's 2004 via pill camera    6MP kicked into remission (along with modified diet) so went off in 2006.
 
2009/2010 acute flare and hospitalization - now on Imuran. Currently taking 55 mg prednisone.
Current problem - protruding thrombosed hemorrhoids (external as well as internal).
 
Fibromyaglia; migraines; herniated disks C5,6 and arthritis in neck; asthma; scolisis in back/arthritis.
 
 
 


huckleberry
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 317
   Posted 6/27/2010 7:27 PM (GMT -7)   
So sorry you're dealing with c-diff. Hurray for the 5 mg!
Hang in there...
Official dx September 2007.
currently flaring (June 2010) with colitis
Medications: Pentasa, Omeprazole, Prednisone, 6MP
History of hypothyroid (dx 2004, take Levoxyl), and gall bladder surgery (1997).
47 years old; single mom to three wonderful kids, ages 12 to 18.


exit 4
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 148
   Posted 6/27/2010 7:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I had c diff twice - both times from strong antibiotics that stripped my good bacteria in the gut. Nasty stuff - start taking pro biotic as soon as possible.
Always remember to forget the troubles that pass your way;
BUT NEVER forget the blessings that come each day.


CrohnieToo
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 9448
   Posted 6/28/2010 4:02 AM (GMT -7)   
BE FAITHFUL and be DILIGENT in treating C. difficile!!!! Unrecognized and untreated C. difficile recently came close to killing my brother in law. It took a month in the hospital after finally being correctly Dx'd and treated to get him hydrated and strong enough to be released to go home. They actually had to start him in PT to regain his strength, when scripted 4 hours of PT he could still only do 2 hours. At 5'10" he was down to 110 lbs at one point. He was a hard-working construction worker building highway bridges, active fisherman and hunter, physically active, healthy individual and then .....

Good luck and God bless!
My computer says I need to upgrade my brain to be compatible with its new software.


PV
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 1177
   Posted 6/28/2010 11:28 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm glad they tested you for c-diff and are treating it. My husband was hospitalized in 2008 with a c-diff infection, and also diagnosed with crohn's at the same time. He was in pretty bad shape, and it took Remicade + steroids and high doses of vancomycin + flagyl to get him home. It's a bit of catch-22 if your crohn's is flaring and you have c-diff - to treat crohn's you need to suppress the immune system, to fight c-diff in conjunction with antibiotics, you need a strong immune system.

My husband got c-diff without having been on any antibiotics, or in a nursing home or hospital. . . he just got it. They say that people with Crohn's (any IBD really) are more susceptible to getting c-diff, because part of the problem with Crohnies (one theory) is the imbalance of gut flora. So, it could be that because of your Crohn's, it allowed c-diff to take root. C-diff spores can live on surfaces for 6 months or more. So, it is quite prevalent - it's just the gut flora keep c-diff in check. If your gut flora is not keeping c-diff in check, you end up with a c-diff infection.

Be sure to augment the flagyl with probiotics (2 hours before or after taking flagyl). Also, relapse rates are quite high for c-diff - 20-25% of folks with a c-diff infection have a relapse in the first 3 months after infection, because c-diff formes spores that can pretty much live indefinitely in the gut. Be diligent about the probiotics. Also, saccharomyces boulardii is a yeast that has shown efficacy against c-diff. My husband takes them in hopes of preventing another infection with c-diff.

Another thing that can happen after c-diff is what is called post-infectious IBS. So, be careful with your diet for a while after c-diff. Also, when recovering from c-diff, it can be difficult to tell whether you are dealing with IBS or with c-diff. A rule of thumb is if it goes on for 3-days straight, you are probably having a c-diff relapse. If things stabilize within 3 days, then, you're likely dealing with IBS. However, to be on the safe side, get your stool tested if you suspect it is c-diff.

My husband was diagnosed with a c-diff infection in March 2008, and again, while on vancomycin in the hospital had a positive c-diff test because his immune system wasn't functioning well enough to fight c-diff. But with the addition of flagyl he prevailed, and he had to stay on antibiotics for c-diff until he completely came off the prednisone in December. He was c-diff free for 9 months, but tested positive for c-diff again in Sep 2009. After a course of antibiotics, he's been c-diff free again since Oct 2009.

So, c-diff can be hard to fight, especially for folks with IBD, and it can be recurring problem. However, it can be beaten back, and medication does keep it in check. While there are some strains of c-diff that are resistant to flagyl, there are no strains of c-diff that are documented to be resistant to vancomycin. Also, they are working on a more narrow spectrum antibiotic to target c-diff called fidaxomycin which should be released sometime this year. So, while it is not something that is easy to deal with, it can be conquered, and there's more help on the way.

hang in there, and I hope you feel better soon.
PV
Husband with Crohn's
Diagnosed March 2003 Ulcerative Proctitis
Diagnosed March 2008 Crohn's & C-diff, hospitalized 45 days
Crohn's in Remission since June 2008
C-diff recurrence Sep 2009
Reactive Arthritis Nov 2009
Currently c-diff free
Osteopenia of spine (Mar 2010)
Canasa (1gm), Lialda (4.8 gms), Remicade (8 weeks)
Currently In Remission


dms40
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 37
   Posted 6/28/2010 11:36 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry that you are dealing with this. 
In addition to what your Dr. is prescribing you might want to look into Saccharomyces Boulardii to help treat the C. Diff, this is a natural product that has studies behind it to prove that it is helpful.
 
Just one link to take a look at, if you google it you'll find lots more.
 
 

champagnekindofgal
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 221
   Posted 6/28/2010 12:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey, thanks for the info ... when you say diet, what do you recommend. And I've tried locally to find saccharomyces boulardii but can't find it ... any recommendations? Do you think I could have gotten in Jan and just have had symptoms after weaning off prednisone? I've had abd pain for a while and D off and on ... only to have gotten worse and fever last three weeks ... I also work in a hotel and have exposure to sheets/towels/pens ... any ideas?
44-single mom diagnosed with Crohn's 2004 via pill camera    6MP kicked into remission (along with modified diet) so went off in 2006.
 
2009/2010 acute flare and hospitalization - now on Imuran. Currently taking 55 mg prednisone.
Current problem - protruding thrombosed hemorrhoids (external as well as internal).
 
Fibromyaglia; migraines; herniated disks C5,6 and arthritis in neck; asthma; scolisis in back/arthritis.
 
 
 


dms40
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 37
   Posted 6/28/2010 1:19 PM (GMT -7)   
S boulardii is marketed as Florastor at places like Rite-aid or Wal Greens (assuming you're in USA)  if you're in Canada like me then you have to get it through a naturopath or AOR has a great product that you can get anywhere that carries AOR product (usually any health food store).
Sorry, I can't help you determine how you got it, I would put my bet on the hospital though.

PV
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 1177
   Posted 6/28/2010 5:35 PM (GMT -7)   
As for where you got it from, I think just having your crohn's flare up can result in a c-diff infection because a crohn's flare can result in disturbing your gut flora. IMHO a hospital stay in Jan is too far in the past to be the reason you are fighting a c-diff infection now. Also being on steroids suppresses your immune system which also makes you more susceptible to c-diff, so weaning off the pred can only be good for getting rid of c-diff. It cannot cause c-diff. However if your crohn's starts flaring as you are weaning off the pred it may have caused c-diff to take hold.

I usually order my florastor online at costlessvitamin.com which is the cheapest source I've found. In terms of diet, my husband stuck to a very bland low residue diet for 3 months after finishing the course of antibiotics for c-diff.
Husband with Crohn's
Diagnosed March 2003 Ulcerative Proctitis
Diagnosed March 2008 Crohn's & C-diff, hospitalized 45 days
Crohn's in Remission since June 2008
C-diff recurrence Sep 2009
Reactive Arthritis Nov 2009
Currently c-diff free
Osteopenia of spine (Mar 2010)
Canasa (1gm), Lialda (4.8 gms), Remicade (8 weeks)
Currently In Remission

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