September 13th is World Sepsis Day – a disease that affects around 30 million people worldwide.
To mark the day and raise awareness, Fletchers Solicitor, Jennifer Argent, has written the following blog highlighting the warning signs:
Without quick medical attention, sepsis can lead to multiple organ failure and death. It is the body’s overwhelming response to infection even from something as minor as a cut or graze and is more likely to affect very young children, older adults, people with chronic diseases and those with a weakened immune system. However, sepsis can kill people of all ages and health and every 3.5 seconds someone in the world dies from sepsis (according to The UK Sepsis Trust) and ¼ of all sepsis survivors suffer permanent, life changing after effects.
Unfortunately, sepsis is notoriously hard to spot and the medical profession can struggle or be delayed in their diagnosis. It is therefore important that everyone knows the signs and symptoms in order to act quickly.
Sepsis has featured on several TV programmes recently in a bid to increase awareness and has been featured on BBC’s Panorama and ITV’s Coronation Street.
The signs to watch out for are now made memorable by its own acronym. If you or anyone you know develops any of the following symptoms, seek urgent medical assistance;
S – slurred speech or confusion
E – extreme shivering or muscle pain
P – passing no urine (in a day)
S – severe breathlessness
I – it feels like you’re going to die
S – skin mottled or discoloured
In children, a very low temperature or a fever could be an indication of sepsis. There are other varying symptoms, which could also be an indication that urgent medical assistance is needed; breathing quickly, fitting, feeling lethargic, being abnormally cold to the touch and looking blue or pale.
If sepsis is detected early, it may be treatable with antibiotics and most people who are treated in this way make a full recovery. Unfortunately, most people will require a hospital admission, and possibly an admission to an intensive care unit.
The severity and speed of sepsis means that an urgent medical diagnosis and treatment is required. If you feel that you, or someone you know, has suffered from sepsis and weren’t given the care that they needed then please speak to us and we will see if we can help.