Breaking the Cycle: The Role of Microbiota-Based Biotherapies in the Reduction of Recurrent Clostridioides difficile
Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile) is a gram-positive bacterium that infects the colon and causes diarrhea, abdominal bloating, and occasionally colitis. C. difficile infection is associated with significant morbidity and mortality, increased healthcare costs, and hospital readmission rates.
The epidemiology and incidence of C. difficile infections have changed over the past decade, and recurrence continues to pose significant burdens on patients, clinicians, and the healthcare system. Recurrent C. difficile infections can occur in up to 35% of patients who previously had C. difficile infection, usually as a result of the disruption of the intestinal microbiota. Recurrent C. difficile infections are associated with longer hospital stays and higher healthcare costs compared with an initial episode. Therefore, clinicians must be familiar with the risk factors for recurrence, as well as treatment options to prevent multiple recurrences to break the cycle. Microbiota restoration therapies including fecal microbiota transplant (FMT) has shown efficacy in treatment of recurrent C. difficile infections by correcting intestinal dysbiosis. However, FMT itself poses some difficulties associated with safety, and novel live biotherapeutic products (LBPs) are under investigation in phase 2 and 3 trials to overcome these limitations. As such, clinicians must be familiar with the assessment of risk factors, updated clinical guidelines, and available treatment options to reduce recurrences and improve patient outcomes.
• Describe the integral role of the intestinal microbiota in C. difficile infection and the importance of microbiota restoration for prevention of recurrence
• Distinguish the benefits and limitations of fecal microbiota transplantation for the treatment and prevention of recurrent C. difficile in patients failing appropriate antibiotic therapy
• Analyze clinical trial data on emerging microbiota restoration therapies
• Discuss the emerging potential of microbiota restoration therapies for patients with recurrent C. difficile infections
Case #1: Andrew / Diagnosis and Treatment of an Initial Episode of C. difficile Infection
Case #2: Stephanie / Recurrent C. difficile Infection in a Patient With No Risk Factors
Case #2: Jason / Recurrent C. difficile Infection in a Patient With Multiple Risk Factors
Epidemiology of C. difficile
Pathogenesis of C. difficile Infection
Diagnosis of C. difficile Infection
Treatment of C. difficile Infection
Introduction to Prevention and Treatment of Recurrent C. difficile Infection
Bezlotoxumab for Prevention of Recurrent C. difficile Infection
FMT for Treatment of Recurrent C. difficile Infection
LBPs for Treatment of Recurrent C. difficile Infection
Professor of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases
Corporate Medical Director, Infection Prevention, Epidemiology and Antibiotic Stewardship
Detroit Medical Center
Wayne State University
Director, Infection Prevention
Epidemiology and Antibiotic Stewardship
The Academy for Continued Healthcare Learning is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The Academy for Continued Healthcare Learning designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
The Academy for Continued Healthcare Learning is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education.