Antibiotic-Associated Enterocolitis

Etiology:  Clostridium difficile is a Gram-positive, spore-forming anaerobic bacillus.  These anaerobic bacteria produce toxins that cause edema and hemorrhage, and occasionally mucosal dysfunction and necrosis [2].

Incidence: The incidence of infection with Clostridium difficile is uncommon.

Transmission:  C. difficile is transmitted by the fecal-oral route, and overgrowth is precipitated by receiving a combination of amoxicillin and metronidazole in the food.

Clinical Signs:  Death may occur following antibiotic treatment.

Pathology:  Lesions include typhlitis and colitis.

Diagnosis:  Definitive diagnosis can be made by identification of the bacteria in anaerobic cultures of ileal or cecal contents or by detection of exotoxins in cecal filtrates by ELISA.  PCR can also be used for diagnosis.

2.            Percy, D.H., Barthold, Stephen W., Pathology Of Laboratory Rodents and Rabbits. 3 ed2007, 2121 State Avenue, Ames, Iowa 50014, USA: Blackwell Publishing Professional.