Could it be Sepsis?

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Sepsis is a potentially life-threatening disease caused by the immune system’s response to an infection. It is essential to recognise and treat sepsis early to ensure successful treatment.

The impact of the failure to recognise and treat sepsis at an early stage has resulted in the implementation of “Martha’s Rule”, where parents, carers and patients have the right to request an urgent second opinion from clinicians at the same hospital if there are concerns over care.

The recent inquest of Mattheus Ferriera-Viera is the latest in a line of cases where a delay in the recognition and treatment of sepsis has had fatal consequences. Following the 2023 inquest of a local child, ND, Ipswich Hospital has introduced additional guidance and screening to highlight infections which are at risk of developing into sepsis.

The NHS uses a system called “Sepsis Six” (UK Sepsis Trust) to treat sepsis as soon as it is recognised. Sepsis Six sets out a set of procedures which should take place within the first hour of recognition of sepsis which includes a dose of broad-spectrum antibiotics.

The UK Sepsis Trust gives guidance on how to spot the signs of sepsis in both children and adults: Sepsis symptoms.

Should you have any concerns regarding a child or adult who exhibits the symptoms of sepsis, the advice is to seek urgent medical assistance.

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