Linda A Curtis, LMSW
Sepsis is Deadly
Sepsis is a term most people are not familiar with. But it is a medical condition that can come on quickly and without many outward symptoms and can lead to organ failure and death if not treated rapidly and properly. Elderly and ill people are especially vulnerable to this and it is crucial that caregivers be aware of this and know what to look out for.
Simply stated sepsis is your body's overactive and extreme response to an infection.
The CDC has reported
At least 1.7 million adults in America develop sepsis (annually)
At least 350,000 adults who develop sepsis die during their hospitalization or are discharged to hospice.
1 in 3 people who dies in a hospital had sepsis during that hospitalization
Sepsis, or the infection causing sepsis, starts before a patient goes to the hospital in nearly 87% of cases.
In the senior population it is important to know that urinary track infections which often go un-noticed for weeks or months can lead to sepsis. It is not unusual for both men and women to not feel the typical symptoms of UTIs (such as burning when urinating....). Also families often do not know what is wrong with their loved one since sepsis can present as an altered mental state.
The Sepsis Alliance is an organization that is working hard to increase the public's awareness of this deadly condition.