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Proper detection of sepsis

Mar 21, 2017 | Failure to Diagnose

Sepsis is a life-threatening disease that could afflict any New York resident. It requires early detection and prompt treatment, but there are many challenges associated with being able to provide rapid care to sepsis patients. It is important that both patients and medical professionals are able to differentiate sepsis from other common diseases so it is quickly and accurately treated.

Even minor infections can lead to sepsis, which is the body’s overwhelming response to an infection that could actually lead to death. This condition is especially hard to diagnose because its symptoms mirror those of many less serious diseases. Common symptoms include fever, abdominal pain, rapid heartbeat and vomiting. There is no definitive blood or bacterial test for sepsis, but a patient may help a doctor make a correct diagnosis by thoroughly explaining any changes that may be happening. Patients and their families are often more observant about any new developments that are occurring than the physicians, so they can be crucial in detecting sepsis early on.

Rapidily starting treatment in sepsis patients is critical because the disease can progress quickly to a life-threatening stage. Patients are generally treated with antibiotics to control the underlying infection. The proper antibiotic type and dosage usually depend on the cause and type of the infection.

If someone sustains a serious injury or dies from sepsis, his or her surviving family members may be able to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the physician or hospital. When consulting with an attorney about the lawsuit, the family members need to determine whether the sepsis was misdiagnosed as a less serious disease and then not treated accurately or if negligent medical treatment by a doctor or medical staff led to an infection that later caused the condition.