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A member asked:

what is sepsis?

5 doctor answers11 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ruben Nazario
Specializes in Pediatrics
A severe infection: Sepsis is the term used by doctors to describe a severe, life-threatening bloodstream infection. Sepsis can cause your baby's organs to fail. If untreated, sepsis can be fatal. Treatment with intravenous fluids and antibiotics, and close monitoring in the hospital can prevent serious complications.
Dr. Lisa Roberts
Pediatrics 23 years experience
Blood infection: "sepsis" refers to a very severe blood infection that happens in certain children. Some babies are at higher risk (babies in hospitals who have indwelling IV catheters, children with immune deficiencies, severe premature infants or infants born to mothers with active infections). Most children with sepsis have high fever and act very ill. This is a serious illness that can be treatable.
Dr. Payam Rafat
Podiatry 22 years experience
Severe infection: If an infective agent travels to the blood stream and spreads, it could cause what is called sepsis. With sepsis the body is greatly challenged to fight the infection. In severe cases the patient may go into multi-organ failure, shock, or even death. Have it evaluated and get the appropriate treatment. You may need oral or intravenous antibiotics, oxygen, IV fluid and pain medication.
Dr. Martin Raff
Infectious Disease 56 years experience
Sepsis: There are now a set of 4 criteria that define sepsis. High or low WBC count, pulse of >90, respirations of 20 or greater and temperature elevation or hypothermia. Any 2 of these when infection is present constitutes "sepsis". There are further criteria for severe sepsis, septic shock and sepsis with multiorgan failure.
Dr. Robert Robinson
Internal Medicine 21 years experience
Clinical diagnosis: Sepsis is a clinical diagnosis - there is no lab test for sepsis. Lab tests are used to assist in the diagnosis of sepsis. Look at the SOFA score to see how clinical information is put together to determine if someone has sepsis https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SOFA_score The SOFA score uses vital signs, physical exam, and lab tests to help determine if someone has sepsis

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A 21-year-old member asked:

How common is sepsis?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Aaron Milstone
Pulmonology 27 years experience
Common: Nearly three quarters of a million americans suffer sepsis each year; a high proportion die each year from sepsis. It is fairly common in most hospitals.
A 21-year-old member asked:

Is sepsis fatal?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. William Walsh
Addiction Medicine 17 years experience
Can be: However, sepsis is usually not fatal; depending on the patient, the source and cause of infection, its susceptibility to treatment, closeness of the patient to adequate care and time to antibiotic therapies the survival of the patient varies. There are survival calculators (as morbid as that is). Here is a link to a french page that i use: http://www.Sfar.Org/article/315/scores.
Dr. William Walsh
Addiction Medicine 17 years experience
Provided original answer
The APACHE II, and SAPS II, and SOFA scores are quite useful.
Dec 27, 2011
CA
A 16-year-old member asked:

Can sepsis kill you?

3 doctor answers9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Aaron Milstone
Pulmonology 27 years experience
Yes: As a general rule of thumb your risk of dying from sepsis is about 20% per each organ system affected. For instance if you have cardiac dysfunction and liver dysfunction from sepsis your risk of dying could be as high as 40%. Each year severe sepsis strikes about 750, 000 americans. It’s been estimated that between 25and 50 percent of these people die!
CA
A 27-year-old member asked:

How does sepsis spread?

4 doctor answers10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Edward Neilsen
Family Medicine 19 years experience
Blood: Typically sepsis starts in a single area - kidney, open wound, broken bone, etc - but spreads throught the body in the bloodstream.
Philippines
A 23-year-old male asked:

What causes sepsis?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Goodpaster
Dentistry 29 years experience
Severe Infection: Sepsis means that an infection that would normally be confined to one area of the body has entered the bloodstream meaning it can infect the whole body. It is serious & life-threatening & requires high doses of IV antibiotics in most cases. Usually it occurs when people do not seek treatment for infections like a tooth abscess that could be resolved with oral antibiotics.

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