Mercy's Dr. Anurag Maheshwari Discusses Treating Recurrent C-Diff
Antibiotics can knock out an illness, but for some people, these drugs can trigger a potentially life-threatening infection, caused by bacteria commonly known as clostridium difficile, or C. diff.
It's basically when bad bacteria in the gut attacks the good bacteria.
C. diff can lead to a life-threatening form of diarrhea. It is often spread in health care facilities and people with compromised immune systems are more at risk.
According to Dr. Anurag Maheshwari of The Institute for Digestive Health and Liver Disease at Mercy Medical Center, C. diff relapse can occur in 40 percent of patients.
"The reason for the relapse typically tends to be this upset of the balance in the colon of the healthy bacteria versus the C. diff, so when the proportion of healthy bacteria goes down, C. diff has the chance to rise up and cause the production of toxins, which then causes diarrhea," Dr. Maheshwari said.
One option to treat recurrent C. diff is a fecal transplant.
Healthy stool from a donor, usually a family member, helps replenish bacterial balance. The procedure is similar to a colonoscopy.
View Mercy’s Dr. Anurag Maheshwari’s interview regarding recurrent C-diff.
Founded in 1874, Mercy Medical Center is a university-affiliated medical facility named one of the top 100 hospitals in the U.S. by Thomson-Reuters with a national reputation for women’s health. Mercy is home to the nationally acclaimed Weinberg Center for Women’s Health and Medicine as well as the $400+ million, 20-story Mary Catherine Bunting Center. For more information visit Mercy online at www.mdmercy.com, Facebook, Twitter or call 1-800-MD-MERCY.