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Home Industry News Sepsis should be treated as urgently as heart attacks, says NICE

Sepsis should be treated as urgently as heart attacks, says NICE

15th July 2016

New guidance from the UK's National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has called for sepsis to be treated with the same urgency as heart attacks.

The guidelines urged health professionals across the whole of the NHS to think about the possibility of sepsis in all patients who may have an infection in order to reduce the number of deaths the condition causes in the UK each year – currently 44,000.

Sepsis begins when the immune system overreacts to an infection and causes damage to healthy tissue, resulting in a range of symptoms – including high temperature, a fast heartbeat, a fever or chills – that can often be mistaken for a common infection.

As such, the NICE guidelines offer information on which signs doctors should be looking out for and the tests that need to be performed, as well as the need for those at high risk to be hospitalised immediately.

The guidance also warns against the needless use of antibiotics in all but the most severe of cases, while underlining the need for patients to receive more information on the condition.

Professor Mark Baker, director of the NICE Centre for Guidelines, said: "If there is any delay in spotting the signs, we will fail patients by leaving them with debilitating problems or, in the worst cases, people will die."ADNFCR-8000103-ID-801821873-ADNFCR

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