Start Your Claim Today

Send us your details, and one of our experts will be in touch.

Successfull form submission tick

Thanks for your details!

One of our legal specialists will review your details and call you back within 24 hours to discuss this further.

Alternatively to speak to a specialist
for FREE call us now on 0800 888 6888

Successfull form submission tick

Thanks for your feedback!

We take all of our feedback seriously so we can learn what we're doing right, wrong and how we can improve.

If you would like to speak to us regarding your feedback please email us at compliance@hampsonhughes.com

World Sepsis Day 2020: Are COVID-19 patients at more risk of sepsis?

As the UK’s number one cause of death, sepsis is a condition that can affect any age, sex or race. In fact, the number of people who die from it each year exceeds the number of those who lose their lives to prostate, lung and breast cancer combined.

 

However, it is a matter that still requires more public awareness, especially as we battle through the COVID-19 pandemic. As we mark World Sepsis Day on 13 September, we look at how COVID-19 patients face the additional risk of developing sepsis, how we can address this issue and what action can be taken if the development of the condition was mistreated or misdiagnosed.

 

WHAT IS SEPSIS AND HOW DO YOU SPOT THE SYMPTOMS?

Often referred to as blood poisoning, sepsis occurs when the body’s immune system overreacts to an infection and starts to fight healthy tissue and organs, leading to organ failure and, in some cases, death.

 

The Sepsis Trust tells us to looks out for the following symptoms:

Slurred speech or confusion

Extreme shivering or muscle pain

Passing no urine (in a day)

Severe breathlessness

It feels like you’re going to die

Skin mottled or discoloured

 

WHAT CAUSES SEPSIS AND IS IT PREVENTABLE?

Sepsis is a life-threatening condition that, in 2017, affected 49 million people across the world, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Its causes include:

  • A chest infection causing pneumonia
  • A urine infection in the bladder
  • A problem in the abdomen, such as a burst ulcer or a hole in the bowel
  • An infected cut or bite
  • A wound from trauma or surgery
  • A leg ulcer

 

While sepsis does not discriminate between factors such as age or sex, it is most common in pregnant and recently pregnant women; young children; elderly people; and those with underlying chronic health conditions. There is also a higher number of incidences and deaths in low- and middle-income countries.

 

However, sepsis is preventable and is often linked to suboptimal quality of care, an inadequate health infrastructure, poor infection prevention measures, late diagnosis, and inappropriate clinical management.

 

HOW ARE COVID-19 PATIENTS IMPACTED BY THE THREAT OF SEPSIS?

As we’ve mentioned, sepsis is the body’s response to an infection, injuring its own tissues and organs. Therefore, people who are struck down with severe cases of COVID-19 – and other infectious diseases – are at a higher risk of developing, and dying from, sepsis.

 

The Sepsis Trust says that a percentage of COVID-19 cases can develop into such organ failure, meaning that, as well as respiratory failure, kidney failure and / or shock is also possible.

 

And, the Global Sepsis Alliance (GSA) is calling for action to raise awareness of sepsis to save lives. The organisation is asking government, regional and global institutions, such as WHO, to step up its efforts and allocate more resources to fight against sepsis, stating that such improvements will impact positively on COVID-19 patient outcomes.

 

GSA President, Prof. Konrad Reinhart, says: “The 2020 World Sepsis Day occurs at a time when mankind faces one of the greatest pandemics of recent times. Severe infections with COVID-19 are in fact viral sepsis – which is often not recognised.

 

“Severely ill COVID-19 patients and those affected by sepsis from other pathogens — such as bacteria, other viruses, fungi, or parasites — are indistinguishable on clinical grounds.”

 

WHAT CAN YOU DO IF YOU WERE MISDIAGNOSED AND HOW CAN WE HELP?

If you or a loved one has developed sepsis and it was not identified or diagnosed and treated during the early stages, you could go on to have long-term health problems and could therefore be entitled to compensation.

 

Our medical negligence team works with individuals to ensure they receive compensation to help towards the costs of rehabilitation, loss of earnings or prescription charges.

 

Carlos Lopez, director of the clinical negligence team at Hampson Hughes Solicitors, said: “I have acted for many clients and families who have been affected by sepsis. Unfortunately, sometimes the condition has led to tragic – and avoidable – deaths.

 

“Now more than ever, in the shadow of a potential second rise in COVID-19 infections, hospitals and medical professionals need to be on high alert for sepsis signs and symptoms.

 

“Training, relevant sepsis medical equipment and understanding of sepsis protocols are key, to avoid a wave of unnecessary deaths.”

 

Get in touch with our experts for a free, no-obligation consultation to find out how we can help. You can give us a call on 0800 880 7864 or drop us an email via: info@hampsonhughes.com

Free Advice

We offer a free legal consultation
to every potential client

No Win No Fee

Many of our claims are offered on
No Win No Fee payment terms

Use our App

Our Free App allows you to
manage your compensation claim

9/10

of our clients were
completely satisfied

9/10

of our clients would
use us again

9/10

of our clients would
recommend our services

65M

in compensation
recovered for our clients

Screenshot of the Claim Test used to check if you have a claim

Find out how much you can claim with our compensation calculator

It's really quick and easy, find out in 30 seconds.

See what you're owed!
Call us FREE on
0800 888 6888
or request a call back