Objective. National guidelines recommend oral vancomycin over oral metronidazole as first-line treatment for nonsevere Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI) in adults. Guidelines recommend metronidazole for children with nonsevere CDI, emphasizing that comparative effectiveness studies comparing the relative efficacy of vancomycin and metronidazole are lacking in children. Method. We conducted an observational study of hospitalized children with nonsevere CDI treated with metronidazole versus vancomycin using an inverse probability of treatment-weighted propensity-score analysis. All of the following criteria had to be present for children with positive CDI testing for study eligibility: (1) ≥3 new-onset unformed stools within a 24-hour period; (2) 2–17 years of age; (3) hospitalization for ≥48 hours for CDI; (4) no laxative use ≤48 hours; (5) no alternate etiology for diarrhea; (6) no previous episode of CDI ≤3 months; (7) no concurrent non-CDI–targeted antibiotic therapy, and (8) no severe or fulminant CDI. Results. One hundred ninety-two patients met eligibility criteria; 141 (73.4%) received oral metronidazole and 51 (26.6%) children received oral vancomycin. Baseline characteristics were similar between the 2 groups in the weighted cohort. Of 141 patients, 101 (71.7%) children receiving metronidazole had clinical improvement by day 5, whereas 44 of 51 (86.3%) cases resolved with vancomycin (odds ratio, 0.40; 95% confidence interval, 0.17–0.97; P = .04). The odds of CDI recurrence within 12 weeks were similar between the groups. Conclusions. Our study suggests that children with nonsevere CDI have earlier resolution of clinical symptoms when prescribed vancomycin compared with metronidazole. Large interventional studies are necessary to evaluate the reproducibility of our findings.
- C. difficile
- Clostridium difficile