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Journal Details
License
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Journal
First Published
30 Mar 2015
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

Healthcare-associated Clostridioides difficile infection during the COVID-19 pandemic in a tertiary care hospital in Romania

Published Online: 29 May 2021
Page range: -
Received: 20 Apr 2021
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
First Published
30 Mar 2015
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

Introduction Information on healthcare-associated C.difficile infection (HA-CDI) in COVID-19 patients is limited. We aimed to assess the characteristics of HA-CDI acquired during and before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods We conducted a retrospective study in a tertiary care hospital, in which since March 2020 exclusively COVID-19 patients are hospitalized. We compared HA-CDI adult patients hospitalized in March 2020-February 2021 with those hospitalized during the same period in 2017-2018.

Results We found 51 cases during 2020-2021 (COVID-19 group), incidence 5.6/1000 adult discharge and 99 cases during 2017-2018 (pre-COVID-19 group), incidence 6.1/1000 adult discharge (p=0.6). The patients in COVID-19 group compared to pre-COVID-19 group were older (median age 66 vs 62 years), with similar rate of comorbidities, but with higher rate of cardiovascular diseases (62.7% vs 42.4%) and less immunosuppression (21.6% vs 55.6%), they had a higher proton pump inhibitors use (94.1% vs 32.3%), and a longer hospitalization (median 19 vs 14 days).

Eighty-five (85.9%) patients in pre-COVID-19 group versus 44 (86.3%) patients in COVID-19 group received antimicrobial treatment – mainly cephalosporins (34,1%), quinolones (22,3%) and glycopeptides (21,1%) in pre-COVID-19 group and mainly cephalosporins and macrolides (63,6% each) in COVID-19 group. We found four HA-CDI-related deaths in pre-COVID-19 group and none in the COVID-19 group.

Conclusions The HA-CDI incidence in COVID-19 group did not change versus the same period of time during 2017-2018. The antibiotic use was the most important factor associated with HA-CDI. We identified a high use of broad-spectrum antibiotics despite the lack of empirical antimicrobial recommendations in COVID-19.

What is important: Information on healthcare-acquired C.difficile in COVID-19 patients is limited, but not only C.difficile infection remains a worrying issue, but is also an emerging topic. We found that antibiotic use seems to be the most important factor associated with CDI and our data emphasize the need for rational use of antibiotics and for ongoing attention regarding CDI in COVID-19 patients.

Keywords

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