C-diff after diverticulitis

C-diff after diverticulitis

Posted in the Diverticulitis Forum

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JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#1 Aug 11, 2011
Hi all

My intention is not to frighten anyone but to gather information so please know everyone is different and the majority of people recover from diverticulitis without complications.

I had my first episode of diverticulitis about 2 weeks ago, took the dreaded cipro/flagyl combo for 10 days but spiked a temp just 2 days later and am now in the hospital with c-diff. This is my second full day in the hospital.

I am so terrified as this has been a horrendous experience. I was wondering if anyone else got c-diff from the antibiotics and how they coped. Now I am faced with IV Flagyl and Vancomycin...will be sent home in a few days with oral Vanco.

I am beginning to think I might never recover...the first day of the c-diff made me think I was surely dying.

Can anyone at all offer me any suggestions or hope?
Thank you so much for listening.
chris hagen

South Portland, ME

#2 Aug 12, 2011
JoJo wrote:
Hi all
My intention is not to frighten anyone but to gather information so please know everyone is different and the majority of people recover from diverticulitis without complications.
I had my first episode of diverticulitis about 2 weeks ago, took the dreaded cipro/flagyl combo for 10 days but spiked a temp just 2 days later and am now in the hospital with c-diff. This is my second full day in the hospital.
I am so terrified as this has been a horrendous experience. I was wondering if anyone else got c-diff from the antibiotics and how they coped. Now I am faced with IV Flagyl and Vancomycin...will be sent home in a few days with oral Vanco.
I am beginning to think I might never recover...the first day of the c-diff made me think I was surely dying.
Can anyone at all offer me any suggestions or hope?
Thank you so much for listening.
Jo Jo
I am so sorry that you have c-diff. I have not had it but when I had my first attack on 6/28 I scoured this forum and found out I should be on probiotics when taking all the antibiotics. This I believe helped my gut maintain some of the good flora. I timed it so I took it at the opposite times of the antibiotics. I will keep you in my prayers and hope you recover fast and get on a good probiotic now!
Mike

Charlottetown, Canada

#3 Aug 12, 2011
I have no experience or wisdom to offer you, other than the Probiotics that Chris mentioned. There is a Probiotic called Florastor that is actually being used as treatment against recurrent cases of C-Diff. Supposed to be very effective and works in 50% of cases where antibiotics have failed.

Check it out. Florastor.
Georgia

United States

#4 Aug 12, 2011
Hi JoJo,
I am also so sorry. Yes, I know there are others that have to go through this and it is miserable, but it does pass. I hope for you that it passes as fast as possible so you can get home and get on with your life. I'm sending you the best wishes and keeping you in my thoughts.
JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#5 Aug 12, 2011
I did take probiotics via pills and yogurt during the entire course of my original 10 days of antibiotics for the diverticulitis. Somehow I developed c-diff anyway. The Infectious disease doctor tells me that the symptoms of c-diff are worse when a person is young.(Now, at 55, I'm young!). But I certainly would not wish this c-diff on anyone. It seems like it might be a vicious cycle as I will go home on Vanco for several weeks.
Guess there haven't been many other people who got it based on the replies but that's a good thing.
Thanks Chris.
JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#6 Aug 12, 2011
Thanks Mike and Georgia

I have been reading about this Florastar but I don't know where to get it...is it here in the US or only Canada? I would be anxious to try it..so far, the docs here have not offered any advice on diet or probiotics. I think they are only interested in the infection. They mentioned something about fecal transplantation as a last resort. It kind of freaked me out but I would do anything to not have this constant painful diarrhea and abdominal discomfort.
Mike

Charlottetown, Canada

#7 Aug 12, 2011
Florastor is available online just about anywhere but I don't know about actual stores. I haven't seen it in any here.

Here is their website with a store locator.
http://www.florastor.com/

Here is the wiki article on it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saccharomyces_bo...

Here is the excerpt from the article which may be most interesting to you.

Administration of two 500 mg doses per day of S. boulardii when given with one of two antibiotics (vancomycin or metronidazole) was found to significantly reduce the rate of recurrent Clostridium difficile (pseudomembranous colitis) infection. No significant benefit was found for prevention of an initial episode of Clostridium difficile-associated disease.
S. boulardii secretes a 54 kDa protease, in vivo. This protease has been shown to both degrade toxins A and B, secreted from Clostridium difficile, and inhibit their binding to receptors along the brush border. This leads to a reduction in the enterotoxinic and cytotoxic effects of C. difficile infection.[15]
JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#8 Aug 13, 2011
Thank you everyone and Mike, I am going to get some of that Florastor right now..delivered overnight if need be. It can't hurt although my infectious disease doc does not place much faith in probiotics aiding in treatment and prevention of c-diff.
Diverticulitis and c-diff...it's already been tough already but I think I might be in for a crazy ride.:/
Mike

Charlottetown, Canada

#9 Aug 13, 2011
Good luck Jojo. Keep us posted on your progress.
tetris

Hurleyville, NY

#10 Aug 13, 2011
Florastor tends to be expensive. Jarrow makes a S.Boulardii. 1/2 the price. I was diagnosis with C-Diff the same time I have my last bout with Divert. I was shocked. It had been at least 6 months sinceI had had a broad spectrum antibiotics. A lot of people may have C-Diff and not know it. It presents as a foul smelling muocousy diarherria. Sometimes it only lasts for a couple of days and then goes back to being dormant until something triggers it. I believe it is this that sets our diverticulitis off. The watery BM's the straining.
That is just my opinion. Press your GI be relentless. Make sure you clean all your hard surfaces with bleach. Not the wipes, they do not contain bleach. Bleach and hot water your linens. I do a bleahc cleaning of my bathroom once a week and my appliances to. Handles, telephones, lightswitches.
The most effective precaution is washing your hand thourghly and frequently. Not just a quick spritz under the water. Soap water up pass the wrist, between you fingers, underneath your nails, tops and bottoms. Don't bite your nails or even put your fingers in your mouth or nose. This is an anal/oral contact that produces spores.
Brian

West Linn, OR

#11 Aug 13, 2011
Jo-jo, sorry to hear you're in the hospital with c-diff. On the positive side you're at the right place. They'll keep you there until you're all better.

It sounds like a have a somewhat similar experience. I had my first diverticulitis attack 3 weeks ago. I had diarrhea but the diver seemed to almost completely clear up. Two days from finishing my antibiotics the diver flared up again. They switched antibiotics and a week later it got even worse and now I'm in the hospital.

I tested negative for c-diff,\which I wonder if this is unlucky. Everything they've tested me for which would cause diarrhea has come back negative. Basically, there is nothing they can do for it. The doc said I'd probably have diarrhea until I'm finished with the antibiotics.

This scared the heck out of me because the antibiotics are treating the diver but causing diarrhea. I suspect the diarrhea is inflaming the diver. I'm worried the only way the break the chain is surgery.
randi

Fort Worth, TX

#12 Aug 13, 2011
how many times a day do you go when you have c. diff? i have had that orange mucous diahhrea for two days but it cleared up.

it's the nagging pain on the left side and lower abdominal burning that's bothering me.

i read where c. diff you go 10-15 times a day. wow, i don't do that.
Betty

Alice, TX

#13 Aug 13, 2011
JoJo, good news for you I hope. In 2007 I had colon resection and did in fact get C-diff. Bad. I remained in hospital 17 days and I wouldn't wish it on anyone. BUT, I was taken care of in the hospital and came home and never had c-diff again or diverticulitis. EVERYONE had to clean hands as they entered left my room so as not to infect anyone else,,, I KNOW you are afraid, but try your best to KNOW you will get better. I promise you it helps. I TOLD myself I would never be that sick again AND never smoke again, I haven't. Hang in there!!! Sending you warm compassion through here.
tetris

Callicoon Center, NY

#14 Aug 13, 2011
Betty wrote:
JoJo, good news for you I hope. In 2007 I had colon resection and did in fact get C-diff. Bad. I remained in hospital 17 days and I wouldn't wish it on anyone. BUT, I was taken care of in the hospital and came home and never had c-diff again or diverticulitis. EVERYONE had to clean hands as they entered left my room so as not to infect anyone else,,, I KNOW you are afraid, but try your best to KNOW you will get better. I promise you it helps. I TOLD myself I would never be that sick again AND never smoke again, I haven't. Hang in there!!! Sending you warm compassion through here.
I was diagnosed with C-diff after being diagnosed with diverticulitis in May. 16 days later the test came back negative and 6 weeks later there was no sign of it when i had a colonoscopy. So both the GI and Surgeon concluded that it will be okay to proceed with surgery/ I had the surgery on Tues. and was released today. I was kinda hoping that I had the BM in the hospital so they could have tested it. Just had my first BM a few minutes ago. Don't know what to expect, but it does have the C-Diff smell. But I never had the smell when I had it.

Boy your C-Diff showed up soon after. I am holding my breathe. I don't want to go throught that again.
Brian

West Linn, OR

#15 Aug 13, 2011
Tetris, you were diagnosed in May and just got surgery? How bad was your attack(s)? From what I hear they normally don't due surgery unless you have 3+ attacks.

You must have been c-diff free when you had the surgery. Otherwise the doc would never have done it.

I assume you're taking probiotics which sounds like it does a good job at preventing c-diff. What antibiotics are you on. I've heard they commonly treat c-diff with cipro/flagyl. If this is what you're on then you should be in good shape.

If you're still worried you can ask your doc to order a stool sample.
tetris

United States

#16 Aug 14, 2011
Brian wrote:
Tetris, you were diagnosed in May and just got surgery? How bad was your attack(s)? From what I hear they normally don't due surgery unless you have 3+ attacks.
You must have been c-diff free when you had the surgery. Otherwise the doc would never have done it.
I assume you're taking probiotics which sounds like it does a good job at preventing c-diff. What antibiotics are you on. I've heard they commonly treat c-diff with cipro/flagyl. If this is what you're on then you should be in good shape.
If you're still worried you can ask your doc to order a stool sample.
Brian,
That was my second severe attack with abcess. With the second I almost had an emergency colonectomy. Once was well I decided to really concentrate on being as up to this surgery as I could and having it on my terms, not the diverticulitis'. I upped my fiber and water intake and started walking 4 miles a day. I take Trace Minerals 55 billion probiotics from Vitamin World, Jarrows S.Boulardii,2x's daily and Sundown Acidophilis 2 Billion 2xs daily. I took these upto and including the day of surgery and as soon as I could tolerate fluids afterwards(about 8 hrs)
I had 3 opinions on whatever or not I should have the surgery. All concurred that with my age It should be done. So why wait for the inevidiable 3rd attack, 3 hospitalization and round of antibiotics. I tested negative on May 16th for C-Diff and on June 15th when I had my colonoscopy there was no sign of C-Diff. My concern was that I would be given antibiotics before and after the surgery which would once again trigger the C-Diff. The surgeon was very respectful of my concern and prescribed a narrow spectrum antibiotic and 3 tablets of Flagyl as pre -surgery coverage. I have no antibiotics after surgery. Believe me I didn't enter into this surgery lightly. I stressed over this the whole time that I was getting in shape for it and I almost canceled the day before the prep. In the back of my mind there lingered the memory of that awful worse pain that I had ever had, I proceded.

I am marking my second bowel movement since the surgery. There is sign of a problem or C-Diff so at the moment all is good.
Should the C-Diff return i'll seek the proper treatment. I'll see the surgeon on Wednesday and discuss a stool sample with him.
Robin

Jacksonville, FL

#17 Aug 14, 2011
JoJo~

I was able to purchase Florastar at Walgreens, yesterday.$16.00 for 20 pills, which you are supposed to take twice a day. It is expensive, but hopefully worth the cost, if it ends up helping with C-Diff and the diverticulitis.

Good luck with finding the Florastar.
JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#18 Aug 14, 2011
Thank you all for the suggstions and moral support! I see I'm not alone in all this and my heart goes out to all of you because this is some crazy ride.
I am home from the hospital. I was found to have colitis due to the c-diff and, at one point, my blood pressure dropped significantly and all hell broke loose. The good news is that the original diverticulitis had cleared considerably. Now I am being treated at home for the c-diff. My diarrhea slowed down on the IV Flagyl and oral vanco I was getting in the hospital.
I was given a soft diet and sent home with instructions to follow with that. I have been eating things like mashed potatoes and small amounts of protein in order to heal my bowel.
My original problem was severe and chronic constipation which I asume contributed to the original diver dx. Today I am once again constipated...how I could go from one extreme to another is mind-boggling. I never tolerated fiber well and it always worsens my constipation so I am limiting my fiber to just a few grams a day right now.
So, now I am stuck with wondering if I should take the Milk of Magnesia that I usually took when I could not go for a few days. I told the docs this would happen but they said the vanco would keep my from becoming constipated. They do not know my body!
The infectious disease doc told me that it's important to get the c-diff out of my body in order to not further damage my bowel. I've tried prune juice, glycerin suppository and tons of water. I'm at my wit's end and scared to death.
I do not see the GI for 2 weeks as my colonoscopy cannot be done while I have c-diff. It is a new doc..I didn't have a GI doc to start with.
I don't know what to eat, what not to eat or how to handle this constipation. I would think that taking MOM would be better than c-diff fulminating in my colon but, on the other hand, I don't want to irritate my bowel and risk a perforation.
The good news is that I have no fever and only mild cramping. But this has worn me out very badly. It's a good thing that I'm relatively healthy as I think this would have killed me if I had not been well-nourished to begin with.
At this point, I would consider fecal transplant (ugh!) or even bowel resection if it comes to that as I surely cannot function in this way.
Thanks again to all who are listening. Tetris and Betty..you give me hope. Brian..I'm sorry that you can't get a definite diagnosis..are you still in the hospital? Chris and Mike..thank you for the probiotic suggestions. I found Florastor here and am taking 2 a day along with daily yogurt.
Sorry this is so long...it feels good to write it all out though. I am trying to stay positive but it is so difficult. It's just one big bummer.
JoJo

Tucson, AZ

#19 Aug 14, 2011
oh, and thank you Robin...Walgreen's IS where I found the Florastor.
Susan

Manchester Township, NJ

#20 Aug 14, 2011
I have ulcerative colitis and always take Florastor as a preventative
when taking antibiotics as per my GI doc. Usually you get c diff in a hospital or a nursing home. were you in the hosptial for the original infection? My neighbor was in the local hospital for tests and she said in the middle of the night they took her room mate out and all the furniture and told her to wash her hands real good when she used the rooms bathroom. Wouldnt tell her why-medical privacy you know. Well 2 days later she comes down with real bad diarrhea! of course it turned out the room mate had c dif and she caught it.

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