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Clostridium difficile Toxin A/B

Test Code: B65008
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Clinical Utility

This assay is only available as part of a panel and cannot be ordered individually.

Clostridium difficile is the most common cause of nosocomial infectious diarrhea in developed countries and is the major cause of antibiotic-associated pseudomembranous colitis.1,2 C. difficile is a Gram-positive anaerobic rod-shaped bacterium belonging to the Clostridiaceae family that causes diarrhea following the production of two toxins, enterotoxin A (the product of the tcdA gene) and cytotoxin B (the product of the tcdB gene).1,3,4  In the US, the number of hospitalized patients discharged with "intestinal infection due to C. difficile" (as the discharge diagnosis) more than doubled between 2000 and 2009 from approximately 139,000 to 336,000.5 C. difficile infections may range from mild infections, causing low-grade fever and mild diarrhea, to severe infections, causing high fever and severe diarrhea, or even toxic megacolon.6


1.  Yoo J, Lightner AL. Clostridium difficile Infections: What Every Clinician Should Know. Perm J. 2010 Summer:14(2):35-40.

2.  Navaneetham U, Giannella RA. Mechanisms of infectious diarrhea.  Nat Clin Pract Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2008 Nov:5(11):637-47.

3.  Schlenker C, Surawicz CM. Emerging infections of the gastrointestinal tract. Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2009;23(1):89-99.

4.  Persson S, Torpdahl M, Olsen KE. New multiplex PCR method for the detection of Clostridium difficile toxin A (tcdA) and toxin B (tcdB) and the binary toxin (cdtA/cdtB) genes applied to a Danish strain collection. Clin Microbiol Infect. 2008 Nov:14(11):1057-64.

5.  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Vital Signs: Preventing Clostridium difficile infections. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2012 Mar 6;61 Early Release.

6.  Bobo LD, Dubberke ER, Kollef M. Clostridium difficile in the ICU: the struggle continues. Chest. 2011 Dec:140(6):1643-53.


Specimens are approved for testing in New York only when indicated in the Specimen Information field above.

The CPT codes provided are based on Viracor Eurofins' interpretation of the American Medical Association's Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes and are provided for general informational purposes only. CPT coding is the sole responsibility of the billing party. Questions regarding coding should be addressed to your local Medicare carrier. Viracor Eurofins assumes no responsibility for billing errors due to reliance on the CPT codes illustrated in this material.

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