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      The epidemiology of sepsis in a district hospital emergency centre in Durban, KwaZulu natal

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          Sepsis is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. There is a paucity of data describing the epidemiology of sepsis in emergency centres in developing countries. This study aims to describe the clinical profile and management of patients presenting with sepsis in this setting.


          A retrospective chart review was conducted in an Emergency Centre (EC) of a district hospital in Durban from December 2015 to February 2016. All patients with a diagnosis of an infection that met the Surviving Sepsis Campaign criteria for sepsis syndrome were included in the study.


          A total of 1195 patients who were diagnosed with an infection were screened. Of these, 52 of them met the inclusion criteria for the study. The criteria for severe sepsis was met in 40.3% (n 23) and 1.9% (n 1) met the criteria for septic shock. More than half of the patients were HIV positive and 30.7% did not know their HIV status. The most common sites of infection were respiratory tract, gastrointestinal and central nervous system respectively. Most patients were admitted to the general medical ward. The inpatient mortality rate was 15% for general medical ward admissions.


          A better understanding of the demographic and clinical profile of sepsis syndrome in South African ECs is required to guide clinical and operational policy development.

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          Most cited references 11

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          The effect of age on the development and outcome of adult sepsis.

          Sepsis is an increasingly common and lethal medical condition that occurs in people of all ages. The influence of age on sepsis risk and outcome is incompletely understood. We sought to determine the independent effect of age on the incidence, severity, and outcome of adult sepsis. Longitudinal observational study using national hospital discharge data. Approximately 500 geographically separated nonfederal acute care hospitals in the United States. Patients were 10,422,301 adult sepsis patients hospitalized over 24 yrs, from 1979 to 2002. None. Incident sepsis cases were age adjusted and characterized by demographics, sources and types of infection, comorbid medical conditions, and hospital discharge status. Elderly patients (> or = 65 yrs of age) accounted for 12% of the U.S. population and 64.9% of sepsis cases, yielding a relative risk of 13.1 compared with younger patients (95% confidence interval, 12.6-13.6). Elderly patients were more likely to have Gram-negative infections, particularly in association with pneumonia (relative risk, 1.66; 95% confidence interval, 1.63-1.69) and to have comorbid medical conditions (relative risk, 1.99; 95% confidence interval, 1.92-2.06). Case-fatality rates increased linearly by age; age was an independent predictor of mortality in an adjusted multivariable regression (odds ratio, 2.26; 95% confidence interval, 2.17-2.36). Elderly sepsis patients died earlier during hospitalization, and elderly survivors were more likely to be discharged to a nonacute health care facility. The incidence of sepsis is disproportionately increased in elderly adults, and age is an independent predictor of mortality. Compared with younger sepsis patients, elderly nonsurvivors of sepsis die earlier during hospitalization and elderly survivors more frequently require skilled nursing or rehabilitative care after hospitalization. These findings have implications for patient care and health care resource prioritization and provide insights for expanded scientific investigations and potential patient interventions.
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            Epidemiology of severe sepsis around the world.

            Severe sepsis is an ongoing challenge for clinicians and health-care administrators mainly because is associated with a high incidence, mortality rate and costs. In recent years, several epidemiological studies about the incidence of sepsis have come out in different and prestigious journals. However, it is not advisable to draw direct conclusions from those studies considering methodological flaws or even different approaches. Hence, we have to be familiar with those obstacles and know how to overcome them. This review paper highlights the methods which have been used in these studies and depicts the results of occurrence rate or incidence of sepsis in countries and in intensive care units.
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              National study of emergency department visits for sepsis, 1992 to 2001.

              Epidemiologic data on emergency department (ED) patients with sepsis are limited. Inpatient discharge records from 1979 to 2000 show that hospitalizations for sepsis are increasing. We examine the epidemiology of sepsis in US EDs and the hypothesis that sepsis visits are increasing. The National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey data (1992 to 2001) provided nationally representative estimates of frequency and disposition in adult ED visits for sepsis. Sepsis visits were identified using International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification codes; severe sepsis was defined as sepsis in conjunction with organ failure. Of 712 million adult visits during the 10-year period, approximately 2.8 million (0.40%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.33% to 0.46%) were related to sepsis. We found no significant increase in overall ED visits for sepsis from 1992 to 2001 (P for trend=.09). ED patients with sepsis were more likely to be elderly, non-Hispanic, and publicly insured and to arrive by ambulance compared with nonsepsis patients (all P<.01). The overall admission rate was 87% (95% CI 82% to 92%), with only 12% (95% CI 8% to 16%) of patients admitted to the ICU. The most frequent codiagnoses were pneumonia (13%), urinary tract infection (13%), and dehydration (11%). Severe sepsis accounted for 8% (95% CI 5% to 11%) of sepsis visits, for an annual incidence of 0.01%; 98% of patients with severe sepsis were admitted. In contrast to data from hospital discharges, ED visits for sepsis demonstrated no increase. Most ED visits for sepsis resulted in admission to non-critical care units.

                Author and article information

                Afr J Emerg Med
                Afr J Emerg Med
                African Journal of Emergency Medicine
                African Federation for Emergency Medicine
                02 March 2019
                September 2019
                02 March 2019
                : 9
                : 3
                : 123-126
                Division of Emergency Medicine, University of KwaZulu Natal, Durban, South Africa
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author. nqobilendadane@ 123456gmail.com
                2019 African Federation for Emergency Medicine. Publishing services provided by Elsevier.

                This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

                Original Article

                developing countries, emergency department, sepsis


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