Q:

Can clostridium difficile be spread by laundry?

A:

Quick Answer

According to the Center for Disease Control, clostridium difficile can survive on a variety of surfaces and materials, including clothing. This means it has the potential to spread through laundry. Washing clothes using common-sense hygiene practices makes spreading clostridium difficile through laundry unlikely.

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Full Answer

The clostridium difficile bacterium produces spores that can live for months on a variety of surfaces, including clothes. The soiled clothes of a patient need to be handled with disposable gloves. Washing and drying clothes using normal temperature cycles is sufficient to kill the bacteria. It's best to clean infected laundry as soon as possible to minimize the risk of cross contamination with other surfaces.

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