Sepsis is an infection of the blood stream. It sounds simple, if your blood gets infected, take an antibiotic, right? It isn't that simple. Sepsis is a life-threatening condition and it can strike after surgery, after something as simple as a urinary tract infection or you may not even know where it started.
Article: All About Sepsis
Sepsis is so dangerous because of the body's reaction to it. In addition to a fever, confusion, racing heart and breathing that is very fast, sepsis causes the blood pressure to plummet. The body is fighting so hard to control the infection and maintain blood flow, yet the infection is on a rampage.
Sepsis can strike out of the blue, and it hits hard. Patients can go from feeling normal to in an ICU with full supportive measures in 24-48 hours. Sometimes the source of infection can be located and treated with surgery or other means, for other patients the source is never known.
Recently, a young and healthy Brazilian model died after developing sepsis that started with a urinary tract infection. Jim Henson, the famous creator of the Muppets, also died of sepsis that developed from a case of pneumonia.
Luckily, sepsis is not a common condition. It is more likely to happen after surgery for an infection than to develop from a garden variety UTI. Still, if you are feeling lousy, know you have an infection and start to develop a serious fever along with feeling faint and breathing fast, don't ignore it. This is one of those times where you are better safe than sorry, especially if you are recovering from surgery.
Have you or a loved one experienced sepsis? Share your story: My Experience With Sepsis
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