Clin Infect Dis. 2021 May 11:ciab417. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciab417. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Primary prevention of C. difficile infection (CDI) is a priority for hospitals and probiotics have the potential to interfere with colonization and infection with C. difficile. This study evaluated the impact of a computerized clinical decision support tool (CCDS) to prescribe probiotics for primary prevention of CDI among adult hospitalized patients.
METHODS: A CCDS tool was implemented into the electronic medical record at four hospitals prompting prescription of a probiotic preparation at the time of antibiotic prescription in high-risk patients in May 2019. Interrupted time series using segmented regression analysis was conducted to evaluate hospital-wide CDI incidence for the year pre- and post-CCDS implementation. In addition, multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate CDI incidence in patients qualifying for probiotics in the pre- versus post-intervention periods adjusting for potential confounders. To adjust for potential differences in patients who received probiotics in the post-intervention period, propensity score matched pairs were developed to evaluate CDI risk by receipt of probiotics.
RESULTS: Quarterly CDI incidence increased over time post-intervention relative to baseline trends (slope change 1.4, 95% CI 0.9-1.9). The odds ratio (OR) of CDI was 1.41 in eligible patients post-intervention compared to pre-intervention (adjusted OR 1.41, 95% CI 1.11, 1.79). Propensity score matched analysis showed that patients who received probiotics did not have lower rates of CDI compared to those who did not receive probiotics (OR 1.46, 95% CI 0.87, 2.45).
CONCLUSIONS: Use of probiotics for primary prevention of CDI among adult inpatients receiving antibiotics is not supported.