Sepsis: Know the Signs

September 27, 2018

We want everyone in our community to know the signs of sepsis. 

Signs of heart attack and stroke are widely publicized, as the heart and brain are vital organs.

It is just as important to recognize sepsis in order to save vital organ tissues that are attacked by infection, possibly resulting in sepsis.  The body’s response to infection plays a role in making sepsis one of the most common, least recognized illnesses across the world.  In fact, sepsis is the 3rd leading cause of death in the US.

Facts about sepsis and the body’s life-threatening response to infection:

  • One person in the US dies from sepsis every 2 minutes:  270,000 people a year.
  • More children die of sepsis than of pediatric cancers
  • Every day, there are an average of 38 amputations in the US, as a result of sepsis
  • Death caused by sepsis increases by as much as 8% for every hour treatment is delayed
  • As many as 80% of sepsis deaths could be prevented with rapid diagnosis and treatment
  • Survivors may face lifelong consequences

In 2017, Wilson Medical Center treated more than 600 patients who presented to the hospital with symptoms of sepsis.

Wilson Medical Center has an active improvement campaign to identify early warning signs of sepsis, educate nursing staff and provide tools for early detection of symptoms and support physicians to develop best practice and improve processes to recognize and treat sepsis early.

Visit to learn more about the symptoms and risks and talk to your primary care provider about how you can help prevent infections. Need a doctor? Call our Physician Referral Line at 1-800-424-DOCS (3627) to get connected to one today.

Gail Brewer, MPH, BSN, RN, is the Director of Quality and Outcomes Management at Wilson Medical Center.