World Sepsis Day: How to spot sepsis

2 minute read

A clipboard with a piece of paper on that says sepsis

Sepsis is responsible for 1 in 5 deaths worldwide and 48,000 deaths per year in the UK. Early treatment significantly reduces the risk of dying. However, many people don’t know how to spot the signs.

September 13th is World Sepsis Day. The aim is to increase public awareness about sepsis and reduce the harm it causes.

What is Sepsis?

Sepsis is a life-threatening reaction to an infection. It used to be called septicaemia or blood poisoning. It happens when the body’s immune system goes into overdrive and starts attacking itself, and you cannot catch sepsis from another person.

What are the Signs of Sepsis?

Early signs can be remembered with a helpful ‘sepsis’ acronym: –

 Slurred speech

Extreme shivering or muscle pain

Passing no urine in a day

Severe breathlessness

I feel like I might die” (patients often complain of this)

Skin being mottled or discoloured

Other common symptoms can include fever and chills, low body temperature, a fast heartbeat, diarrhoea or vomiting, sweating or clamminess, weakness and severe pain.

Who is at risk of sepsis?

Anyone can get sepsis. However, some people are more likely to get an infection which could lead to sepsis.

Those at higher risk include: –

  • Babies under 1
  • People over 75
  • Diabetics
  • Anyone with a weakened immune system
  • Anyone who has recently had surgery, a serious illness or given birth

How fast does sepsis develop?

Sepsis can occur without warning and develop very rapidly. If you have any signs of sepsis, you should seek medical assistance immediately. It is essential to act fast.

Sepsis Savvy

UK Sepsis Trust is working to make people ‘Sepsis Savvy’. Watch their video, play a short game and find out more here.

Contact Us

Enable Law is proud to support the work of the UK Sepsis Trust. More information about sepsis can be found on their website: –

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