If you’re taking antibiotics, there are some important things you need to know…
Most antibiotic drugs don’t help with C. difficile infections. There are three antibiotics that are still useful against C. difficile: vancomycin (Vancocin) Fidaxomicin (Dificid) and metronidazole (Flagyl), all of which are usually taken orally. Starting in 2017, Vancomycin and Dificid have replaced Flagyl as the “first line” antibiotics of choice for C. diff. treatment.
Because of the growing problem of antibiotic resistance, metronidazole or Flagyl has become less effective against C. difficile infections. Therefore, Flagyl is no longer considered a good “first line” treatment choice for C. diff. A few newer antibiotics, such as rifaximin (Xifaxan), are becoming more commonly used, especially when prior antibiotics have failed. Sometimes multiple courses and combinations as well as tapered regimens of the above antibiotics are used to try to control recurrent C. diff. infections.
I personally see antibiotics as being a last resort treatment for C. difficile, especially mild cases. Antibiotics may or may not work for these infections. And, antibiotics come with a heavy price: mild to sometimes severe side-effects, some of which you probably aren’t even aware of. Often-times, many doctors do not have the time to cover all these side-effects with you.
I believe the key is for you to make educated and informed decisions and to use safe and effective options whenever possible. Antibiotics may have a time and place, but you have other options, too.
Helping your body recover from antibiotics
You’ve probably taken antibiotics if your have C. difficile. And if you’ve taken these drugs, then you should know how to counteract their side effects. You should also know how to rebuild your body to help prevent recurring infections down the road.
It’s important to find the right doctor and know what questions to ask, regardless if you chose antibiotics or natural treatments (or both). The key is to know how to get the most out of each type of treatment and know what critical mistakes to avoid.
If you choose to use antibiotics, then you need to know the following things to reduce your risks:
- The right questions to ask your doctor to make sure you get the best antibiotic for your infection (not broad spectrum)
- How to fix the side effects of your antibiotic treatments
- How to get the most benefit from antibiotics
- What foods, supplements and medications don’t mix with your antibiotics (this is usually found on the antibiotic Product Insert)
- How to ” rebuild” your intestinal flora, immune system and rebalance your body after taking antibiotics
Other mainstream C. diff. treatments
While antibiotics are the most common treatment for C. difficile, other methods are commonly used or prescribed for these infections, depending on the severity.
In severe cases, C. difficile can progress and cause severe damage to the intestines, resulting in the need for surgical intervention. Conditions such as toxic megacolon and colitis are often accompanied with other complicating health problems. Severe C. difficile related conditions can worsen quickly and become life threatening.
In cases where repeated use of antibiotics have failed to stop recurring C. difficile infections, a relatively new procedure called fecal transplantation or FMT is often prescribed. There are now many ways to perform FMT and study results show that the procedure can work very well at treating C. diff, however the FMT procedure is not without risk.
While still considered “alternative” by many doctors, probiotic therapy is becoming more widely used by mainstream medicine to treat C. difficile. Probiotics are most often used to compliment antibiotic treatments rather than as a stand-alone therapy.
Get the full picture on C. difficile treatment
C. difficile is serious business and it should be treated as such. It’s critical for yourself and your family that you understand how to combat these bacteria without relying on antibiotics. While some natural treatment approaches and home remedies work, many are not up to the task of C. difficile.
Learn more about natural C diff remedies here. I cover more details about C diff and antibacterial herbal supplements that have helped others recover. Be sure to get my free report to find out much more, including my herbal program (you’ll see it on the left sidebar). I’ve also completed a new book outlining a 3-step recovery program for C. Diff. You can find out more about it here.
1. McDonald LC, Gerding DN, Johnson S, et al. Clinical practice guidelines for Clostridium difficile infection in adults and children: 2017 update by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) and Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA). Clin Infect Dis. 2018;66(7):e1-e48. doi: 10.1093/cid/cix1085.
2. Cohen SH, Gerding DN, Johnson S, et al. Clinical practice guidelines for Clostridium difficile infection in adults: 2010 update by the society for healthcare epidemiology of America (SHEA) and the infectious diseases society of America (IDSA). Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2010;31(5):431-55. doi: 10.1086/651706.