or another immunosuppressive condition such as an autoimmune disease or an immune deficiency
Immunosuppressive medications needed after a transplant
Medical treatment with an invasive device
IV drug abuse
The first symptoms depend on the site of the infection.
As the condition progresses to sepsis, symptoms include:
Fever and chills
Paleness of skin color
Changes in mental status
Increased heart rate
Decreased urine output
Low blood pressure
Problems with bleeding or clotting
The doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. If sepsis is suspected, the doctor will try to find the source of the infection.
to confirm the diagnosis of sepsis
Urine and other blood tests to check for signs of infection
, sputum, stool, and other secretions to check for bacteria or other infectious agents
—a test that uses radiation to take a picture of structures inside the body
—a type of x-ray that uses a computer to make pictures of structures inside of the body
—a test that uses magnetic waves to make pictures of structures inside of the body
Other specialized tests depending on the source of the infection
This condition will need to be treated aggressively. Treatment is aimed at the cause of the initial infection.
Early treatment improves the chance of survival. Life-saving steps may be needed to assist breathing and heart function. Patients usually need to be observed in an intensive care unit.
IV antibiotics will be used to fight the initial infection and to clear it out of your blood. You will be given oral antibiotics when you leave the hospital.
Surgery is sometimes needed to remove or drain the initial infection.
You will likely receive other medications, IV fluids, and oxygen.
and a respirator (to help you breathe) may be necessary in some cases. Further treatment depends on how your body is responding. For example, you may need
if kidney failure occurs.
It is not always possible to prevent blood poisoning. Avoiding IV drug abuse decreases your chance of sepsis. Healthcare professionals must also take steps to stop the spread of these infections. Getting prompt medical care for infections can reduce your risk of sepsis.
National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention http://www.cdc.gov/
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a