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Sepsis or Septic Shock is a bacterial infection in the blood stream which generally is the product of an infection there or elsewhere in the body.

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Sepsis and Septic Shock

Sepsis or Septic Shock is a bacterial infection in the blood stream which generally is the product of an infection there or elsewhere in the body. It is a serious medical condition which can lead to death.

The elderly, including nursing home residents, are especially susceptible to sepsis, as their immune systems grow weaker with advancing age.

In nursing homes and other care facilities, sepsis may be caused by an array of things, including:

  • Simple abrasions or cuts
  • Bed sores
  • Surgical wounds
  • IV lines
  • Feeding tubes
  • Pneumonia
  • Urinary catheters
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Other infections

The Effects of Sepsis

Sepsis may result in one or more of these serious conditions or outcomes:

  • High fever and chills; or low body temperature
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Gangrene and amputation
  • Kidney failure
  • Death

Serious Bed Sores and Pressure Ulcers

Bed sores are classified by the stages of the injury to a patient. They range from 1 to 4, with 4 representing the most serious condition. Stage 3 and Stage 4 bed sores are regarded to be very serious, as they present dangerous risks for those who develop them.

Remember, bed sores are always preventable with proper attention and care. When they develop on a nursing home resident or hospital patient, it is virtually always the result of carelessness or neglect by staff members.

Whose Fault?

Lack of proper attention by nursing home staff members is a frequent cause of sepsis. Failure to prevent the development of bed sores, improper care of wounds, and medication errors are among the most common causes. When neglect, abuse and carelessness by care givers are responsible for this serious infection, nursing home owners can be held liable for the consequences.

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