Pathophysiology of Sepsis

Posted by e-Medical PPT Sunday, September 12, 2010
Sepsis is a serious medical condition that is characterized systemic inflammatory response syndrome or SIRS and the presence of infection. The body may develop this inflammatory response by the immune system to micro-orgaisms in the blood, urine, lungs, skin, or other tissues.Septicemia is a related but deprecated medical term referring to the presence of pathogenic organisms in the bloodstream, leading to sepsis.
Severe sepsis occurs when sepsis leads to organ dysfunction, hypotension, or hypoperfusion to one or more organs.Sepsis can lead to septic shock, multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS), and death. Organ dysfunction results from sepsis-induced hypotension and disseminated intravascular coagulation, among other things.
In addition to symptoms related to the provoking infection, sepsis is characterized by presence of acute inflammation present throughout the entire body, and is, therefore, frequently associated with fever and leukocytosis or low white blood cell count(leukopenia).
Sepsis is usually treated in the intensive care unit with intravenous fluids and antibiotics. If fluid replacement is insufficient to maintain blood pressure, specific vasopressor medications can be used. Mechanical ventilation and dialysis may be needed to support the function of the lungs and kidneys, respectively. To guide therapy, a central venous catheter and an arterial catheter may be placed. Sepsis patients require preventive measures for deep vein thrombosis, stress ulcers and pressure ulcers, unless other conditions prevent this. 

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