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Lawyer Blog: Baltimore, MD

A New Weapon for Fighting Sepsis

Elderly Care

The problem of sepsis among already-sick patients is not a new one, but it is a big one: sepsis is the ninth most common cause of death in our country. In the ICU, it’s the number one reason for infection-related deaths. Sepsis is responsible for more than 250,000 fatalities and 1.3 million hospitalizations each year in the U.S.

If you’ve ever watched a loved one battle sepsis, or if you are concerned about the problem because someone you love is in a nursing home, you owe it to yourself to learn more about this deadly medical syndrome. However, there is help for doctors in the battle against sepsis: a new iPhone app that assists them in better treating their septic patients.

An Overview of Sepsis

Sepsis always develops from an infection, generally severe and often untreated, from which you already suffer. When the infection initiates the body’s chain reaction of certain chemicals and inflammation as it attempts to fight the infection, the body can be damaged to the point of death. In the last stages, blood pressure drops too low to sustain life.

    Three bacteria are the most frequent triggers of septic reactions:

  • Staph bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus)
  • coli (Escherichia coli)
  • Strep bacteria (certain varieties of Streptococcus).
    Some infections are more likely to be linked to sepsis than others:

  • Pneumonia (lung infections)
  • Urinary tract infections, or UTIs (bladder infections)
  • Infections of the gut
  • Skin infections.

Who is Most at Risk from Sepsis?

    The elderly, especially those who are in a weakened state, are at greater risk of sepsis than the average, healthy adult. Others at risk for sepsis include:

  • Anyone with a weakened immune system
  • Anyone with a chronic medical condition or serious illness such as kidney disease, lung disease, diabetes, and cancer
  • Children under the age of one.

The Sepsis App “Sepsis Timer”

Fortunately, the fight against sepsis has received assistance from the world of technology. The iPhone app Sepsis Timer, created by ESCAVO, was developed to aid doctors in tracking their septic patients. Sepsis Timer helps doctors ensure that patients suffering from sepsis promptly receive what are known as evidence-based treatments and medical attention. Such treatments can be implemented with cutoffs at the third hour and the sixth hour and include antibiotics, pressors (blood pressure medication), and intravenous fluids. The app also provides suggestions for appropriate lab tests. Various timers and reminders help the medical professional keep close track on all their patients who have sepsis.

In February, 2016, new guidelines for evidence-based sepsis treatment, known as Sepsis 3.0, were published by the Third International Consensus on Sepsis. For those medical professionals who need further guidance on Sepsis 3.0, the app includes comprehensive details of the guidelines using a checklist format. Expert commentary about the guidelines is also provided with the app.

Sepsis Timer is not the first sepsis app to be developed; ESCAVO previously released ESCAVO Sepsis. Another app, one that is not sold by ESCAVO, is SmartIntern Sepsis, released in 2016. Both apps are still considered valuable for the medical professional.

It is hoped that these new apps will foster better, more prompt treatment for sepsis, as well as a decrease in deaths due to sepsis.

Let Down by Modern Medicine? Let “The Injury Lawyer” Help You.

An experienced medical malpractice attorney will be able to listen to the facts of your case, conduct a thorough investigation, and help you devise a legal strategy for obtaining compensation for your injuries. Due to the involvement of insurance companies and defendants who can afford a strong legal team, it’s a good idea to equip yourself with an attorney who has extensive experience when it comes to the determination of negligence, which must be established for medical malpractice. Not every medical malpractice claim will hold up in court. However, the only way to determine this is through a thorough case review.

If you or a loved one has suffered from sepsis and its aftermath, and you believe medical negligence is involved, contact Steven H. Heisler today for a free initial consultation regarding whether you have a case. Call 1-877-228-4878 or, if you prefer, use our online contact form.