Treatment of Clostridium difficile infection in pediatric patients

Susanna Esposito, Giulia Umbrello, Luca Castellazzi, Nicola Principi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Clostridium difficile causes infections that can either remain asymptomatic or manifest as clinical disease. In this report, problems, possible solutions, and future perspectives on the treatment of C. difficile infections (CDIs) in pediatric patients are discussed. CDI, despite increasing as a consequence of the overuse and misuse of antibiotics, remains relatively uncommon in pediatrics mainly because younger children are poorly susceptible to the action of C. difficile toxins. In most such cases, C. difficile disease is mild to moderate and discontinuation of the administered antibiotics in patients receiving these drugs when CDI develops, or administration of metronidazole, is sufficient to solve this problem. In severe or frequently relapsing cases, vancomycin is the drug of choice. Probiotics do not seem to add significant advantages. Other treatment options must be reserved for severe cases and be considered as a salvage treatment, although potential advantages in pediatric patients remain unclear.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)747-755
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Review of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2015


  • Antibiotic therapy
  • children
  • Clostridium difficile
  • fecal microbiological transplantation
  • gastrointestinal infection
  • Probiotics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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