What Is a Sepsis Infection?


Quick Answer

Also referred to as septicemia, a sepsis infection is a serious condition characterized by a poor immune response to infections in the body. Instead of fighting the infections, chemicals released in the blood cause inflammation in the entire body. A serious sepsis infection can cause a person to suffer from septic shock when inflammation triggers the formation of tiny blood clots, preventing oxygen supply to vital organs.

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A sepsis infection can be identified in three stages: sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock. Many people suffer from a sepsis infection while still recovering from a surgical procedure. Early symptoms include fever, increased heart rate and increased breathing. A person with severe sepsis infection can have symptoms including skin patches, weakness, unconsciousness, breathing problems, decreased urination and low mental ability. Those experiencing any of these symptoms are advised to seek immediate medical attention to prevent the growth on the infection.

Severe sepsis infection can lead to the failure of the kidneys, lungs and liver and can also lead to death. People who are at risk of suffering from sepsis infection include young babies, the elderly, people with illnesses such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and diabetes. Sepsis infection can be treated with antibiotics, painkillers, insulin and corticosteroids.

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