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Recognizing the signs and symptoms of sepsis

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

scary signs of sepsis

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  • The symptoms of sepsis may appear to be like other infectious processes; however, the condition often worsens quickly and is preceded by an infection, such as a wound in the skin, urinary tract infection or intestinal infection
  • Symptoms may include high fever, reduced urine output as the kidneys shut down, rapid heartbeat and breathing, skin rash and severe muscle pain. Those with sepsis may also exhibit confusion, disorientation, slurred speech and dizziness
  • Sepsis is not an illness but rather a dysregulated bodily response to the inflammation and chemicals released by your body as it fights the infection, and/or chemicals released by the infectious agent
  • Conventional treatment uses antibiotics and drugs to contain blood leakage from the vessels; however, vitamin C, thiamine and steroids, administered intravenously, have been shown to significantly improve outcomes, including reducing kidney failure and death rates

Sepsis is a life-threatening condition triggered by a systemic infection, ultimately affecting the function of your vital organs. The infection is sometimes referred to as "blood poisoning" by the public. According to a study tracking data in two different hospital cohorts, 34.7% to 55.9% of American patients who died in hospitals between 2010 and 2012 had sepsis at the time of their death, depending on which inpatient cohort they were in.

The condition does not discriminate and affects all age groups, socioeconomic groups and genders. A successful outcome relies on early detection and rapid treatment.


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