What Is C-Diff?

Doctors of Internal Medicine in Fremont, CA

C-diff is short for Clostridium difficile, a type of bacterium that attacks the intestinal lining and causes a disorder known as Clostridium difficilecolitis. C-Diff is a major and important cause of infectious diarrhea nationwide. There are different symptoms of this condition. If you are experiencing diarrhea, see a doctor from Washington Township Medical Foundation. There are many causes of diarrhea that your doctor of internal medicine can test for. You should also know about risk factors of C-Diff, including use of certain medications such as chemotherapy drugs or proton-pump inhibitors, a kidney disease, a colon disease, or a gastrointestinal surgery.

Is C-Diff Life Threatening?

C-Diff can be very dangerous and even life threatening. In some cases, a hole in the intestine can develop. In other cases, C-Diff can be relatively mild. In any case, it is important to see a doctor for treatment. Your doctor can diagnose C-Diff either by looking at stool specimens or the results of a colonoscopy.

Mild C-Diff infections may be evidenced by the following symptoms:

  • Watery diarrhea at least three times per day for multiple days
  • Abdominal tenderness / pain

In severe cases, the following symptoms may occur:

  • Serious abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Bloody stool / pus in the stool
  • Water diarrhea for as many as 15 times per day