an acute, exudative colitis usually caused byClostridium difficile
can be caused by other bacteria than C. diff
enterotoxigenic Clostridium perfringens
Typically, symptoms come on between 5 and
10 days after antibiotic therapy. Occasionally
patients will not have had antibiotic exposure
Most patients become unwell
during their course of antibiotics,
but 25-40% may not do so for as
many as 10 weeks afterwards
Most affected individuals experience
watery diarrhoea (varies from
self-limiting to severe and debilitating)
± blood-stained stools, abdominal
cramps, fever (especially so in severe
cases), rigors ± septicaemia.
Severe abdominal pain is
uncommon but may mimic
an acute abdomen.
Frank rectal bleeding suggests
other causes (for example,
inflammatory bowel disease).