We aim to improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of acute bacterial infections to address both clinical response to sepsis, and public awareness of the condition.
What is it?
Sepsis is an inflammatory condition characterized by your body’s excessive immune response to a bacterial infection. It often arises from an infected wound or improperly sterilized medical equipment, or in the form of pneumonia or UTI.
What causes it?
Sepsis can emerge from a variety of microogranisms, but the major ones are gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria, and fungi. These microorganisms release toxins that often set off an immune response that backfires on the body, causing too many cytokines (inflammatory molecules) to be released, resulting in fever, organ failure and blood vessel leakage.
How is it diagnosed?
Currently, there is no single quantitative test to diagnose sepsis. Instead thresholds for body temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate, and white blood cell count are used. With such broad criteria, it is necessary to conduct a blood culturing test to confirm the exact source of the infection, which can delay effective treatment by 24 hours or more.
How do we treat it today?
Septic patients are immediately given vasopressers, fluids, and broad-range antibiotics in effort to slow down the progression of their inflammation. Untimely pathogen identification, targeted antibiotic administration, or antibiotic resistance can further hinder therapeutic success.