Your Dog Could Bring In This Deadly Infection

Your Dog Could Bring In This Deadly Infection

Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) is a bacteria that has wreaked havoc in many American communities for the last few years, and according to new reports, children and family dogs may have a part to play in its continued spread.

If you haven’t heard of the infection in Nashville, here’s what it is in a nutshell: it’s a bacterium that causes mild to severe diarrhea and intestinal conditions like colitis. Usually, this happens to patients who are taking certain antibiotics in high doses, or over a prolonged period of time. Given that some antibiotics can actually destroy a person’s normal bacteria found in the gut, this can cause C. difficile to grow, which produces toxins and thus damages the bowel, causing diarrhea.

Given that I have four dogs, four kids and an elderly parent at home in Nashville, articles that speak to the infections dogs can carry always jump out at me. Our dogs are always out playing in the woods, bringing back lovely gifts, such as ticks and worms! That’s why I found this particularly interesting: in a study carried out with 51 C. difficile patients, more than a quarter of their domestic pets were asymptomatic carriers of the infection, and 66% of those colonized were younger than five years old.

So what can we do about it? C. difficile is a very serious infection, and that’s why the main takeaway from the report was that simple, hygienic measures should always be taken inside and outside your Nashville home. This means washing your hands with soap and water (even in your own home) and being aware of the effectiveness of hand sanitizer in order to prevent the spread of infections.

Want to chat about your skin? Visit us at Skin Solutions Dermatology in Nashville, Franklin, Columbia, Smyrna, Hendersonville or Pulaski to speak with our amazing team of dermatology specialists! Take advantage of our online booking system and book an appointment today.

Source: MD Mag

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Dr Pena

About The Author

Dr. Pena is a Board-Certified Medical Dermatologist, Mohs skin cancer surgeon, and cosmetic dermatologist. Her mission is to educate the diverse patient populations she serves, and their communities, on the importance of skin care in decreasing the risk of skin cancer and minimizing the early signs of aging. She founded Skin Solutions Dermatology with numerous clinics in Nashville, Tennessee and surrounding Middle Tennessee.

Dr. Julia Pena, MD