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Sepsis occurs when an infection spreads to the entire body. Find out what causes sepsis and how sepsis is treated.

Key points

  • Sepsis is a very serious complication of an infection, and is caused by the body’s immune response to the infection.
  • Sepsis is a medical emergency and needs to be treated quickly.
  • Signs and symptoms of sepsis include common infection symptoms, such as fever, along with a fast heart rate, fast breathing, low blood pressure, pale or cool skin, excessive sleepiness or confusion.
  • If your child is showing symptoms of sepsis, they should be treated right away even if an infection is not yet confirmed through testing. Initial treatment includes antibiotics, intravenous fluids and/or oxygen.
  • Regular hand washing and routine immunizations can help prevent some causes of infection and sepsis.
Last updated: October 10th 2022