WiRED Launches Sepsis Module During Sepsis Awareness Month

BY ALLISON KOZICHAROW AND BERNICE BORN

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Credit: Sepsis Alliance

eptember is Sepsis Awareness Month. Sepsis is a complication of infection that can lead to tissue damage, organ failure and death. The condition constitutes a global healthcare problem and is the primary cause of death from infection, especially in underserved countries, despite advances in modern medicine such as vaccines, antibiotics and intensive care.

 

Sepsis is more common than heart attacks and claims more lives than cancer; yet, even in the most developed countries, many people have never heard of it. WiRED International now offers a Sepsis Module in its Health Learning Center. The module describes sepsis, its symptoms, diagnosis, stages, treatment and complications.

 

Blood poisoning is often used as a term for sepsis, but this is a misnomer. Sepsis refers to the presence of microbes in the blood — most commonly bacteria — which can occur anywhere in the body. Anyone can develop sepsis, but it is most common in older adults or in people of all ages who have weakened immune systems. This year the World Health Organization is highlighting maternal and neonatal sepsis, which, while highly preventable, continues to be a major cause of death and morbidity for pregnant women and newborn babies.

 

An overwhelming immune response to infection causes sepsis. It results in impaired blood flow, which damages the body’s organs and, in severe cases, results in a drop in blood pressure, a weakened heart and septic shock. Early treatment of sepsis, usually with antibiotics and large amounts of intravenous fluids, improves chances for survival.

 

WiRED urges everyone to get educated about sepsis.

 

 

 

 

Take a Short Quiz on Sepsis From WiRED’s Sepsis Module

 

1. Sepsis is a common and often deadly complication of ____________.

 Heart disease
 Infection
 Alcoholism
 Diabetes

2. Sepsis refers to a poisonous substance in the blood.

 True
 False

3. Sepsis occurs when ___________ occur(s).

 Organ failure
 A seizure
 A high fever
 Hallucinations

4. Because of complications of sepsis, patients may need specific medications to do what?

 Maintain blood sugar levels
 Maintain blood pressure
 Keep bowels functioning

 

 

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