What is sepsis?
is a life-threatening reaction to an infection. It causes across large areas of the body and can damage tissue and organs.
requires immediate care in a hospital.
Severeis called septic . It often causes extremely low , which limits blood flow to the body. It can cause organ failure and death.
What causes sepsis?
Most of the time,is caused by a . A long-term or a sudden illness can cause . An injury or a reaction to surgery can also cause it.
can occur in people of any . But it is more common in infants, older adults, and people who have a compromised that cannot fight infection. can develop very quickly.
What are the symptoms of sepsis?
causes a combination of symptoms. Symptoms may include breathing problems, a fast heartbeat, chills, cool clammy skin, skin rashes, and shaking. Other symptoms may include a fever or low , confusion, and low .
If you are concerned about, go to the hospital immediately. Tell them you are concerned about .
How is sepsis diagnosed?
Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms and do tests, including blood tests. You may get an X-ray or CT scan to help find the infection.
How is it treated?
You might need to be treated in an intensive care unit (ICU) for several days or weeks. An ICU is a part of the hospital where very sick people get care.
Equipment in the ICU can support your body. That includes your breathing, circulation, fluids, and help for organs like the kidneys and heart. If you need help breathing, amay be used.
Doctors will treatwith medicine to treat infection. They will try to find the infection that led to .
Machines will track vital signs, including temperature,, breathing rate, and pulse rate. You'll get fluids through an IV and may get strong medicine to help raise your .
How can you prevent sepsis?
Here are some ways to help prevent infections that could lead to:
- Try to avoid colds and flu. If you are around people who have a cold or the flu, wash your hands often. And get a flu vaccine every year.
- Get the (to prevent pneumonia, meningitis, and other infections). If you have had one before, ask your doctor if you need another dose.
- Clean any wounds or scrapes.
- Do not smoke or use other tobacco products. When you quit smoking, you are less likely to get a cold, the flu, , and . If you need help quitting, talk to your doctor about stop-smoking programs and medicines. These can increase your chances of quitting for good.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical Reviewer Elizabeth T. Russo, MD - Internal Medicine Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Current as ofNovember 18, 2017