January 16, 2020 – In Breaking News – NPR
A medical condition that often escapes public notice may be involved in 20% of deaths worldwide, according to a new study.
The disease is sepsis — sometimes called blood poisoning.
It arises when the body overreacts to an infection.
Blood vessels throughout the body become leaky, triggering multiple-organ failure.
(The Dangers of Sepsis. It can present with symptoms like confusion, shortness of breath and a productive cough. “With sepsis, it’s very vague. The symptoms are vague, and the signs are vague,” said Dr. Keith Lafferty, an emergency medicine physician with Lee Health. Courtesy of Lee Health and YouTube. Posted May 19, 2019.)
It is surprisingly common in the United States: One prominent study estimates 1.7 million cases a year and 270,000 deaths.
Sepsis in the U.S. can strike otherwise healthy people who get an infection that runs amok.
Many other cases arise in the hospital.
That occurs frequently in people who are already in poor health.
(Learn More in Understanding Sepsis. Courtesy of Lee Health and YouTube. Posted on Apr 6, 2019.)
“Often the underlying cause is something like lung cancer,” says Dr. Kristina Rudd, the lead author of a study published Thursday in the Lancet.
Those people may develop pneumonia, which in turn leads to a deadly case of sepsis.
With this domino effect, “It can be really hard to sort that out,” she says.
It’s an even bigger problem in the developing world, where childbearing women are at the greatest risk.
“These are women who develop an infection after they give birth or have a C-section,” Rudd says.
These women may develop an infection that triggers deadly sepsis, “because often they don’t have access to appropriate obstetric care.”
(Hear the moving, personal stories of Sepsis Victims in Faces of Sepsis. A disease that kills more people each year in the US than Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer and Aids COMBINED. ANY Infection can lead to a TOXIC response of Sepsis. Courtesy of Sepsis Alliance and YouTube.)
Previous studies have suggested that sepsis is at least partly responsible for 1 in 10 deaths globally.
Rudd — an assistant professor of critical care medicine at the University of Pittsburgh — along with more than a dozen collaborators, including some at the University of Washington, decided to look more closely at sepsis globally.
Continue reading… Stealth Disease Likely To Blame For 20% Of Worldwide Deaths
What do you know about the life-threatening condition called sepsis?
Go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://www.cdc.gov/sepsis/index.html to Protect yourself, and your family by learning more about sepsis and how you can prevent it.
(It can present with symptoms like confusion, shortness of breath and a productive cough. “With sepsis, it’s very vague. The symptoms are vague, and the signs are vague,” said Dr. Keith Lafferty, an emergency medicine physician with Lee Health. Courtesy of Lee Health and YouTube. Posted on May 19, 2019.)
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