Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Quicker detection and treatment of severe sepsis

Date:
May 24, 2011
Source:
Lund University
Summary:
Sepsis is the name of an infection that causes a series of reactions in the body, which in the worst case can prove fatal. The problem for both patients and doctors is that the early symptoms are difficult to distinguish from less dangerous infections such as a severe flu or winter vomiting disease. A researcher in Sweden has now discovered a substance in the blood which shows both whether a patient has sepsis and how serious the case is.

Sepsis is the name of an infection that causes a series of reactions in the body, which in the worst case can prove fatal. The problem for both patients and doctors is that the early symptoms are difficult to distinguish from less dangerous infections such as a severe flu or winter vomiting disease. A researcher at Lund University in Sweden has now discovered a substance in the blood which shows both whether a patient has sepsis and how serious the case is.

"Approximately one in five patients with sepsis who are admitted to hospital are at risk of developing severe sepsis within the first 24 hours. If the doctor doesn't immediately understand that the patient is seriously ill, the risk is that he or she does not receive adequate treatment. The patient could also end up on a ward with lower staffing levels and thus less close supervision," says doctor and researcher Adam Linder.

In sepsis (formerly called blood poisoning), the immune system overreacts to an infection, which triggers a series of events in the body. Among other things, the blood vessels begin to leak, resulting in a fall in blood pressure that eventually damages the kidneys, heart and brain. Sepsis is the tenth most common cause of death in the world, and the most common cause of death among already weak patients in hospital intensive care units.

Sepsis is treated with antibiotics, fluids and oxygen. But first, the patients must be diagnosed with sepsis, yet the markers used do not always give a correct diagnosis. Adam Linder has found a better biomarker in protein HBP (heparin-binding protein). This is released by a certain type of white blood cell in amounts which correspond to the immune system's reaction: the greater the overreaction -- and thus the risk of sepsis -- the greater the amount of HBP in the blood of a patient.

Measurements of HBP can also be used in connection with meningitis. There are two forms of the disease, bacterial meningitis and viral meningitis. Again, it is important to get a quick and accurate diagnosis in order to reduce the risk of complications and death. The amount of HBP in a patient's spinal fluid has been shown to provide a more accurate diagnosis than the methods currently used.

However, for HBP measurements to be used successfully in hospitals it must be possible to perform the analysis quickly.

"I analysed my samples in the lab, which took six hours. A doctor in an accident and emergency department cannot wait that long. The time must be reduced to no more than one hour," says Adam Linder.

Hansa Medical, a company in Lund, is currently developing patented methods to quickly analyse HBP in connection with both meningitis and sepsis.

Adam Linder presented his thesis on HBP on 13 May. The title of the thesis is Studies on heparin binding protein in bacterial infections.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Lund University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Lund University. "Quicker detection and treatment of severe sepsis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110523074823.htm>.
Lund University. (2011, May 24). Quicker detection and treatment of severe sepsis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110523074823.htm
Lund University. "Quicker detection and treatment of severe sepsis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110523074823.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins