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What is Sepsis?

Sepsis is a serious bacterial infection that occurs in an individual’s bloodstream or body tissues, usually due to advanced bed sores or pressure ulcers. Some of the symptoms of sepsis that occur are a high heart rate, hyperventilation, fever, and low white blood cell counts. In very severe causes, an individual can develop severe sepsis and/or septic shock. In severe sepsis, individuals experience organ dysfunction following sepsis, and in septic shock, individuals have hypotension, or low blood pressure.

Individuals with sepsis account for one to two percent of all hospitalizations and 25% of all intensive care unit visits. Sepsis also is the 10th most common cause of death in hospitalized patients. In many cases, sepsis is preventable. If nursing home staff does not allow bed sores to develop, then the risk of sepsis decreases substantially. Therefore, sepsis is a common sign of nursing home neglect.

Other ways to prevent sepsis include making sure that workers properly sanitize medical equipment and follow strict hygienic regimens. Staff members should always use gloves when handling the needs of patients with infections. Regularly changing diapers and bedding of incontinent patients also can prevent the development of both bed sores and sepsis. Following infection control guidelines and being able to spot the early warning signs of infection and sepsis also is an essential skill that all staff members at nursing care facilities should have.

Sepsis is only one of many severe medical conditions that can develop in nursing home or residential care patients as a result of improper care by staff members. The Wisconsin elder abuse lawyers of Boller & Vaughan have handled countless claims on behalf of nursing home residents who have suffered serious injuries and even death due to the negligent behavior of nursing home staff and facilities. When a serious injury or death of a loved one occurs, we know just how devastating it can be, and how you powerless you feel as a result. Allow your family to begin the healing process from this traumatic event by holding the wrongdoers responsible for your loved one’s injuries. Contact our office today and set up a free consultation with one of our experienced nursing home abuse attorneys.