Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) in HIV-positive patients

Sumana Goddu, The University of Texas School of Public Health


The main aim of this study was to look at the association of Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) and HIV. A secondary goal was to look at the trend of CDI-related deaths in Texas from 1999-2011. To evaluate the coinfection of CDI and HIV, we looked at 2 datasets provided by CHS-TDSHS, for 13 years of study period from 1999-2011: 1) Texas death certificate data and 2) Texas hospital discharge data. An ancillary source of data was national level death data from CDC. We did a secondary data analysis and reported the age-adjusted death rates (mortality) and hospital discharge frequencies (morbidity) for CDI, HIV and for CDI+HIV coinfection. Since the turn of the century, CDI has reemerged as an important public health challenge due to the emergence of hypervirulent epidemic strains. From 1999-2011, there has been a significant upward trend in CDI-related death rates; in the state of Texas alone, CDI mortality rate has increased 8.7 fold in this time period at the rate of 0.2 deaths per year per 100,000 individuals. On the contrary, mortality due to HIV has decreased by 46% and has been trending down. The demographic groups in Texas with the highest CDI mortality rates were elderly aged 65+, males, whites and hospital inpatients. The epidemiology of C. difficile has changed in such a way that it is not only staying confined to these traditional high-risk groups, but is also being increasingly reported in low-risk populations such as healthy people in the community (community acquired C. difficile), and most recently immunocompromised patients. Among the latter, HIV can worsen the adverse health outcomes of CDI and vice versa. In patients with CDI and HIV coinfection, higher mortality and morbidity was found in young & middle-aged adults, blacks and males, the same demographic population that is at higher risk for HIV. As with typical CDI, the coinfection was concentrated in the hospital inpatients. Of all the CDI-related deaths in USA from 1999-2010, in the 25-44 year age group, 13% had HIV infection. Of all CDI-related inpatient hospital discharges in Texas from 1999-2011, in patients 44 years and younger, 17% had concomitant HIV infection. Therefore, HIV is a possible novel emerging risk factor for CDI.

Subject Area

Microbiology|Public health|Epidemiology

Recommended Citation

Goddu, Sumana, "Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) in HIV-positive patients" (2013). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1541435.