How You Can Prevent Sepsis
You can take these basic steps to help prevent sepsis:
- Get the flu vaccine every year. Wash your hands frequently and avoid contact with those with the cold and flu.
- To prevent pneumonia, meningitis, or other infections, get the pneumococcal vaccine.
- Be sure to clean wounds and scrapes.
- Don’t smoke or use your tobacco products. Those who do not smoke are less likely to get the cold, flu, or pneumonia.
Risk Factors for Sepsis
People with a greater risk for sepsis include:
- Newborn babies, especially those who are premature or have a low birth weight
- People with diseases that weaken their immune system, such as HIV/AIDS or cancer
- Patients being treated in an intensive care unit
- Patients with feeding tubes or breathing tubes
Sepsis Symptoms: Knowing the Signs of Sepsis
Sepsis can be difficult to diagnose in its early stages, as the symptoms can be similar to other conditions.
Doctors look for two or more of the following symptoms before diagnosing sepsis:
- A fast heart rate above 90 beats per minute
- A rapid Breathing rate above 22 breaths per minute
- An existing infection, which is evident when a blood test shows very high or very low white blood count levels
- Body temperature above 101 degrees Fahrenheit or below 96.8 degrees Fahrenheit
Other symptoms that you may recognised include:
- Changes in mental status, such as confusion or disorientation
- Shivering or chills
- Clammy or sweaty skin
- Shortness of breath
- Feeling “off” or the worst you have ever felt
- Severe pain or discomfort
If you have any of these sepsis symptoms, seek emergency treatment immediately.