Septicemia: A catastrophic illness with major cost considerations
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The terms septicemia and sepsis are commonly used interchangeably. Septicemia is a systemic disease caused by the spread of harmful microorganisms and their toxins in the circulating blood. Sepsis is often defined as the systemic inflammatory response to infection caused by microorganisms or their toxins in the bloodstream. Septic shock is an overwhelming septic infection that causes a dramatic drop in blood pressure, inadequate tissue perfusion, and may cause multiple organ damage and death. The frequency of severe sepsis is estimated to be 300 cases per a 100,000 population. While anyone can contract sepsis, it is most common and dangerous in:
- Older adults, neonates, and young children under 1 year of age,
- People with chronic pre-existing conditions like cancer, diabetes, cirrhosis, kidney disease or lung disease,
- People who have infections, wounds, invasive injuries, or burns,
- And, people who have weakened immune systems.
Financial impact of sepsis in hospital admissions
Swiss Re US Medical performed an analysis using the Truven MarketScan® Database2 to quantify the clinical and financial impact from sepsis events due to hospitalizations. The study was focused on more than 26 million member lives with commercial health insurance coverage in 2017 and the utilization and costs of all hospital admissions associated with this population.