“It is a life-threatening illness caused by body response to an infection.”-Sepsis

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Sepsis is the poisoning of blood following an infection or injury. It is a life-threatening illness caused by body response to an infection. Normally, the immune system protects one from many illnesses and infections; however, it could also go into overdrive in response to an infection. Sepsis arises when the chemicals the immune system releases into the bloodstream to fight an infection cause inflammation throughout the entire body instead. In severe cases, sepsis can lead to a medical emergency called septic shock.

 

Symptoms
A fever above 101ºF or a temperature below 96.8ºF
Heart rate higher than 90 beats per minute
Breathing rate higher than 20 breaths per minute
Probable or confirmed infection
Symptoms of severe sepsis include:
Patches of discolored skin
Decreased urination
Changes in mental ability
Low platelet (blood clotting cells) count
Breathing difficulty
Abnormal heart functions
Chills due to fall in body temperature
Unconsciousness
Extreme weakness

 

Causes
Pneumonia
Abdominal infection
Kidney infection
Bloodstream infection

 

Vulnerable groups/factors
People who are at risk include:
Young children and elderly person
People with weaker immune systems, such as those with HIV or those in chemotherapy treatment for cancer
People being treated in an intensive care unit (ICU)
People exposed to invasive devices, such as intravenous catheters or breathing tubes.

 

Diagnosis
The condition can be diagnosed through: Blood test to check for complications like infection, clotting problems, abnormal liver or kidney function, decreased amount of oxygen, an imbalance in minerals called electrolytes that affect the amount of water in your body as well as the acidity of your blood Urinalysis to check for bacteria in your urine Wound secretion test to check an open wound for an infection Mucus secretion test to identify germs responsible for an infection X-rays to view the lungs Computed tomography (CT) scans to view possible infections in the appendix, pancreas, or bowel area Ultrasounds to view infections in the gallbladder or ovaries Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which can identify soft tissue infections

 

Treatment
Use of antibiotics through IV to fight infection
Vasoactive medications to increase blood pressure Insulin to stabilize blood sugar Corticosteroids to reduce inflammation
Painkillers
Use of respirator for breathing
Dialysis
Surgical intervention to remove the source of an infection through draining a pus-filled abscess or removing infected tissue.



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