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You are here : FHU-SEPSISENSEPSISDefinition of Sepsis

Definition of Sepsis

Sepsis is defined as a dysregulated host response to an infection (whether bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic) leading to organ dysfunction.

49 million people are affected by sepsis every year worldwide, causing 11 million deaths (almost 20% of global deaths).

The most common causes of sepsis are diarrheal diseases and respiratory infections.

Sepsis disproportionally affects newly born children, pregnant women, the elderly, as well as patients suffering from immunodeficiency, chronic diseases or living in low-income settings.

Management of sepsis is based on source control, including antibiotics and surgery when required. Adequate hemodynamic support is ensured by the administration of fluids and vasopressors, while respiratory support is ensured by administrating supplemental oxygen.

Early diagnosis and management of sepsis increases survival. However, among sepsis survivors, a third will die over the following year and many others develop long-term sequelae (physical and cognitive deficiencies and mental disorders).