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VIDEO: Hospitalized heart failure patients susceptible to C. difficile




LONDON – U.S. patients hospitalized for heart failure and treated with antibiotics during their hospital stay had an increased rate both for developing Clostridium difficile infection and dying from it, based on nationwide data collected from nearly six million patients.

“Heart failure was an independent risk factor” in multivariate analyses that controlled for demographic factors as well as for several comorbidities of heart failure, Dr. Petra Mamic said in a video interview at the annual congress of the European Society of Cardiology.

She and her associates used data collected by the National Inpatient Sample during 2012 in more than 5.8 million U.S. hospitalized patients who received antibiotic treatment for a urinary tract infection, pneumonia, or sepsis. They compared the rate of subsequent infection with C. difficile in the roughly 1.4 million of these patients who had heart failure and the nearly 4.5 million without heart failure. In a multivariate analysis heart failure patients were 13% more likely to develop C. difficile infection compared with patients without heart failure. In a second multivariate analysis that focused just on patients with heart failure those who had become infected by C. difficile were 81% more likely to die in hospital compared with heart failure patients without this type of infection.

“Heart failure patients are frequently hospitalized and have a lot of bacterial infections, and so receive treatment with a lot of antibiotics,” said Dr. Mamic, an internal medicine physician at Stanford (Calif.) University. “What is important is that C. difficile infection is preventable. Our ultimate goal is to prevent C. difficile in these patients who have such high morbidity and mortality,”

Dr. Mamic had no disclosures.

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