Most people make a full recovery from sepsis. But it can take time. You might continue to have physical and emotional symptoms. These can last for months, or even years, after you had sepsis.
Many people who survive sepsis recover completely and their lives return to normal. However, as with some other illnesses requiring intensive medical care, some patients have long-term effects.
If an infection does occur, your immune system will try to fight it, although you may need help with medication such as antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals, and antiparasitics.
Sepsis is not something you can treat at home. Go to the hospital or call 911 if you have symptoms. Sepsis is a rare complication of an infection and occurs when an extreme immune system response triggers widespread inflammation throughout the body.
Research conducted at the Institute of Healthcare Policy and Innovation at the University of Michigan shows that many people die in the months and years following sepsis diagnosis and treatment. Forty percent of the study subjects who survived the first 30 days under hospital care died within two years.
Sepsis can overwhelm the body. This can cause vital organs to shut down. This usually starts with the kidneys. Blood pressure can drop dangerously low.
Sepsis is a potentially fatal or life changing syndrome wherein the body responds to an infection with a systemic immune response. Many clinicians consider sepsis to have three stages, starting with sepsis and progressing to severe sepsis and septic shock.
a high temperature (fever) or low body temperature. a change in mental state – like confusion or disorientation. slurred speech. cold, clammy and pale or mottled skin.
Sepsis can develop quickly from initial infection and progress to septic shock in as little as 12 to 24 hours. 1 You may have an infection that's not improving or you could even be sick without realizing it.
For example, the “golden hour” as applied to the treatment of critically children and adults with severe sepsis and septic shock is based upon early recognition, early administration of antibiotics, and early reversal of the shock state.
Without timely treatment, sepsis can rapidly lead to tissue damage, organ failure, and death.
If the infection has spread or you have a generalized infection, you may develop other signs and symptoms, such as fever, fatigue, pain, etc. Sometimes however, you may have an infection and not know it, and not have any symptoms.
With quick diagnosis and treatment, many people with mild sepsis survive. Without treatment, most people with more serious stages of sepsis will die.
Sepsis was once commonly known as “blood poisoning.” It was almost always deadly. Today, even with early treatment, sepsis kills about 1 in 5 affected people. It causes symptoms such as fever, chills, rapid breathing, and confusion.
Septic shock: Septic shock is the last stage of sepsis and is defined by extremely low blood pressure, despite lots of IV (intravenous) fluids.
Immediate action required: Call 999 or go to A&E if:
difficulty breathing (you may notice grunting noises or their stomach sucking under their ribcage), breathlessness or breathing very fast. a weak, high-pitched cry that's not like their normal cry.
Sepsis can be hard to spot. At the start you may look okay but feel really bad. Call 999 if you or someone else has any of these signs of sepsis.
As sepsis worsens or septic shock develops, an early sign, particularly in older people or the very young, may be confusion or decreased alertness. Blood pressure decreases, yet the skin is paradoxically warm. Later, extremities become cool and pale, with peripheral cyanosis and mottling.
It's also worth noting the sepsis survival rate in elderly populations is quite distinct from younger adults. With only mild sepsis, a full recovery is the most common outcome. But for septic shock, the mortality rate is estimated to range between 25-40% – and closer to the higher end of that figure for the elderly.
System): In septic shock, the blood pressure can drop too low to keep the person alive. A person with septic shock can develop chest pain, heart failure, and may appear like he or she is having a heart attack.
You'll usually be admitted to an intensive care unit (ICU) so your body's functions and organs can be supported while the infection is treated. In some cases treatment may start in the emergency department.
Your heart stops beating. Your brain stops. Other vital organs, including your kidneys and liver, stop. All your body systems powered by these organs shut down, too, so that they're no longer capable of carrying on the ongoing processes understood as, simply, living.