Sepsis is an extreme response of the body to an infection. It is a life-threatening medical emergency. However, this response can lead to organ failure or death if not scattered with urgency. Common infections occur in the lung, skin, gastrointestinal tract, and urinary tract. Also, it can result in septic shock if blood pressure drops.
Signs of septic shock
- A drop in blood pressure.
- Hard time staying awake.
- Extreme confusion.
- Not able to stand.
People at risk are:
- Children below 1 year.
- Adults above 65 years.
- Those with weak immunity e.g. HIV positive individuals.
- People with chronic conditions e.g. diabetes.
- Those that are hospitalized.
- Sepsis survivors.
So, any type of illness/ infection can lead to sepsis. However, the common causes are:
- Bacterial infection – causes most of the sepsis.
- Viral infection e.g. influenza.
- Fungal infection.
- Digestive system infections.
- Cather use.
- Infections of the urinary system.
- Shortness of breath.
- Extreme body pain.
- Weak pulse or high heart rate.
- Body fatigue.
- Clammy skin.
- Nausea and vomiting.
The complication of sepsis.
Some of the complications as a result of sepsis are:
- Tissue gangrene.
- Lung, brain, or heart damage.
- Kidney failure.
- One may have a higher risk of infection over time.
- Blood test- e.g. complete blood count test, liver function test, or the electrolyte level.
- CT scan.
- Urine test.
- Treat any infection to avoid later complications.
- Proper personal hygiene like washing hands.
- Control or management of chronic health conditions.
- Regular vaccination of diseases like chicken [pox and flu.
- Skin injuries should be properly cleaned and covered to prevent infections.
Treatment of sepsis.
- Antibiotics- broad-spectrum antibiotics are given first to fight many bacterial infections.
- Intravenous fluids.
- Vasopressors- help to increase blood pressure significantly when it drops.
- Supportive caregiving oxygen to those who can’t breathe alone, dialysis in case of kidney failure.
- Surgery- to remove infected tissues.