You may recognize the symptoms of a heart attack or a stroke, but what about sepsis? According to the Sepsis Alliance, the complication is the leading cause of death in US hospitals. Yet more than 40% of Americans have never heard of it.
Sepsis starts with an infection to which the body has an extreme reaction. Symptoms include either a very high or low temperature, increased heart rate, shortness of breath, and confusion or disorientation.
Later on, there can be severe pain or discomfort. But when the complication is caught early, treatment can be simple.
“Don’t underestimate the power of rest and fluids. So, if a person is sick, make sure that you’re drinking water and taking fluids in because that is one of the treatments for sepsis, is fluids, and then antibiotic usage,” says Lisa Thorp, RN and Quality Improvement Specialist.
It is crucial to visit the hospital as soon as you suspect you may have sepsis.