Regional and seasonal variation in Clostridium difficile infections among hospitalized patients in the United States, 2001-2010

Jacqueline R Argamany, Samuel L Aitken, Grace C Lee, Natalie K Boyd, Kelly R Reveles
American Journal of Infection Control 2015 May 1, 43 (5): 435-40

BACKGROUND: This study identified national regional and seasonal variations in Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) incidence and mortality among hospitalized patients in the United States over a 10-year period.

METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort study of the U.S. National Hospital Discharge Survey from 2001-2010. Eligible cases had an ICD-9-CM discharge diagnosis code for CDI (008.45). Data weights were used to derive national estimates. CDI incidence and mortality were presented descriptively. Regions were as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau. Seasons included the following: winter (December-February), spring (March-May), summer (June-August), and fall (September-November).

RESULTS: These data represent 2.3 million CDI discharges. Overall, CDI incidence was highest in the Northeast (8.0 CDIs/1,000 discharges) and spring (6.2 CDIs/1,000 discharges). CDI incidence was lowest in the West (4.8 CDIs/1,000 discharges) and fall (5.6 CDIs/1,000 discharges). Peak CDI incidence among children occurred in the West (1.7 CDI/1,000 discharges) and winter (1.5 CDI/1,000 discharges). Mortality among all CDI patients was highest in the Midwest (7.3%) and during the winter (7.9%).

CONCLUSION: The region and season with the highest CDI incidence rates among patients hospitalized in U.S. hospitals were the Northeast and spring, respectively. The highest CDI mortality rates were seen in the Midwest and winter. Children exhibited different regional and seasonal CDI variations compared with adults and older adults.

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