Charlotte had not had a good start to 2014. The Birmingham nurse had stopped working at Christmas with a flare Crohn’s disease. Then, on January 4, he woke with a sharp pain in his groin.
“I assumed he must have pulled a muscle,” Charlotte, now 28, says. “However, the pain worsened as the day progressed, so I called my sister Giselle for reassurance. She asked if she was swollen or discolored and when I looked, I was shocked to see that my whole leg was mottled red , purple and hot to touch. “
having been in and out of the hospital regularly since the age of 13 with Crohn’s disease, Charlotte hated the prospect of going back .
“I tried to convince myself it was just a groin injury, but Giselle took a look at my leg and called 111 for advice. He was told to call 999 and, within minutes, was being transferred to a & E at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. “
a CT scan revealed a large blood clot in the right leg of Charlotte and she was immediately placed in an anti-coagulant drugs to thin your blood . Doctors told the clot was caused by a combination of their intestinal condition and be as inactive (as she had been sick in bed).
“I was discharged after a week but, two days later, the same happened in the left leg,” says Charlotte
“The doctors were very worried – I was still on anticoagulant medication so they could not understand how I had another great clot “
This time, she had to have the clot removed surgically and had stents (small tubes) inserted in their. legs to keep veins open.
“even though he hated being in the hospital, I was surprised to be told a week later that he could go home,” he adds. “We still had a temperature but the doctor said it was quite normal. They even asked if I discharged because they needed the bed, but she was adamant I was fit and well. Despite my reservations and the nagging feeling that something it was good, had no choice but to go. ”
Charlotte willing to stay with her boyfriend Shaun, who lived with his parents, because they had a downstairs bathroom. “There was no way I could have gone up the stairs and as it was, it quickly became too little to even get out of bed. Hot and cold I was shivering, my body ached and was soaking bedding with sweat, so I assumed he had also developed the flu, “he explains.
Shaun rang his general practice, but was refused a home visit. After a sleepless night, I was worried it was getting worse, so he called an ambulance and Charlotte was taken back to the hospital. “From then on, everything is a blur,” he recalls. “But remember I said it was very bad, morphine for pain were given and the feeling of absolute terror I thought, ‘That’s it. – I’m going to die’..”
Blood tests revealed Charlotte he had sepsis and a cannula is attached to deliver intravenous antibiotics. Meanwhile, her mother, her sister and her boyfriend were told to prepare for the worst.
Sepsis – also known as septicemia and toxemia – now affects about 150,000 people in the UK each year. “There are 44,000 deaths sepsis each year – more than breast and bowel cancer combined – but a third of that could be saved with timely diagnosis and treatment is estimated,” says Dr. Ron Daniels, a consultant in care intensive and anesthesia, and the chief executive of the British charity sepsis Trust ( sepsistrust.org ).
Fortunately, new NHS guidelines may change that statistic. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) said that all health professionals, no matter where they work in the NHS, have to consider the possibility of sepsis in all patients who may have an infection – and any person showing signs should be treated with the same urgency given to those with suspected heart attacks.
Sepsis can affect anyone of any age and is caused when the body over-responds to infection, causing the immune system to go into overdrive and generalized inflammation causing. It can occur after a chest infection, childbirth or surgery – or something as innocuous as a burn, bite or scratch. Undetected and untreated, this inflammation can lead to organ failure, shock and eventually death.
“For every time there is a delay in treatment, the risk of death increases by eight percent,” explains Dr. Daniels. Physicians therefore have to improve the detection of sepsis. So why it is what is missing?
“There are two main reasons,” he explains. “First, sepsis only first identified in 1991 so when he realizes that we have been diagnosing and treating heart attacks since the 1960s with reliability, we are decades ago. Second, sepsis is a great imitator. Unlike heart attacks, which have classic symptoms, symptoms of sepsis can be diverse and varied. and, because the symptoms can be confused with flu, gastroenteritis or chest infection patients tend to stay home and wait to feel better or call your doctor and 111 -. But not an ambulance “
once a patient is in the hospital with signs of the disease should It is treated with a simple process, known as sepsis Six, which includes the administration of intravenous fluids and antibiotics.
“Treatment is not complex or expensive,” says Dr. Daniels. “It’s very simple and very effective – double the chance of surviving if put in place on time.”
Although Charlotte remembers little about this time, her family and her boyfriend kept a vigil by her bedside praying for his condition to improve. After weeks of medical altering antibiotics, struggling to control its temperature and treatment even more blood clots and infection, Charlotte slowly began to respond to treatment. This was followed by intensive physiotherapy and rehabilitation to help join, then get out of bed, stand and walk again. “I was over the moon when, after about two months, I was allowed to go on ‘release
day’ in a wheelchair,” recalls Charlotte. “Because they still had the catheter, I had to come back at night for a few weeks to be sure I do not need more antibiotics. Once I could walk with a walker and get in and out of bed by myself, let me in home “. “Even then, he was not fully recovered, but was told that I would lose my sponsorship if I did not finish my last year. I was very low and I felt abandoned after being discharged, so the discovery of sepsis Trust it was a lifesaver. it was only after talking with Dr. Daniels that I realized my fatigue, loss of short term memory and the inability to find the right words was so normal for survivors even had a name :. Syndrome post-sepsis “
we have to improve the detection of this deadly disease, says Dr. Daniels. “Consume more than a third of our more expensive hospital beds in intensive care and costs the NHS around £ 2.7 billion a year,” he says. “The Department of Health is taking measures to improve detection among doctors and hospital doctors, and new guidelines NICE requires rapid treatment of sepsis..
a difference of only one hour receive treatment can mean the difference between life and death “
S – slurred speech or confusion
E – extreme tremor or muscle pain
P – passing no urine (in one day)
S – severe dyspnea
I – “I feel I could die”
S – mottled or discolored skin
Visit sepsistrust.org for more information.