Published online Jul 28, 2022. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v28.i28.3720
Peer-review started: February 16, 2022
First decision: March 9, 2022
Revised: March 12, 2022
Accepted: June 22, 2022
Article in press: June 22, 2022
Published online: July 28, 2022
Clostridioides (Clostridium) difficile (C. difficile) is still the most common cause of healthcare-associated diarrhoea and is increasing in prevalence as a community-acquired infection. In addition, the emergence of antibiotic resistance in C. difficile can increase the likelihood of the disease developing and/or spreading.
To provide an up-to-date picture of the trends in publications related to C. difficile infection, together with specific insights into hot-button issues in this field.
Publications on C. difficile infections in the field of microbiology between 2001 and 2020 were identified from the Scopus database and Reference Citation Analysis. Bibliometric indicators were determined, including the number and type of publi
A total of 8127 documents on ‘C. difficile-associated diarrhoea’ published between 2001 and 2020 were retrieved from the Scopus database. In the last decade, there has been a significant almost fourfold increase in the number of published papers on this topic. The United States was among the countries (44.11%) with the most publications, and the most involved institution was the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom (2.50%). Three clusters of research were identified and included ‘illness spectrum and severity, as well as the signs, symptoms and clinical pathogenesis of C. difficile’; ‘laboratory diagnosis and characterization of C. difficile’ and ‘risk factors for C. difficile infection’.
This study contains the most up-to-date and comprehensive data ever compiled in this field. More international research and cross-institutional collaborations are needed to address more global C. difficile concerns and to benefit from greater sharing of expertise, which will result in higher quality or more effective studies in the future. Promising research avenues in the near future may draw the attention of relevant scientists and funding organizations and open up novel C. difficile infection–based diagnosis and treatment approaches.
Core Tip: The significance of this study lies in the fact that, to our best knowledge, there are no previous bibliometric studies on Clostridioides (Clostridium) difficile (C. difficile) infection research. This study presents the evolution of C. difficile infection-related publications over time. This bibliometric study will provide clinicians and researchers in gastroenterology and microbiology with a quantitative and timely summary of C. difficile infection-related publications. Promising research avenues in the near future may draw the attention of relevant scientists and funding organizations and open up novel C. difficile infection–based diagnosis and treatment approaches.