Sepsis Is a Severe, Life-threatening Complication for IBD Patients

Sepsis Is a Severe, Life-threatening Complication for IBD Patients
It's Sepsis Awareness Month, so I’m discussing what sepsis is and how it is often a complication of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and colorectal surgery. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), "sepsis arises when the body’s response to an infection injures its own tissues and organs, potentially leading to death or significant morbidity.” WHO statistics show that more than 30 million people contract sepsis each year, and 6 million die from it. But aside from all these scientific terms and statistics, what is sepsis? To me, sepsis looked and felt like the following: It all started with a 103-degree fever, a high pulse well into the 130s, low blood pressure hovering around 70/30, and a high white blood cell count of 27 to 28. Just a few short days after surgery, I was rushed to the operating room to locate the source of my infection. Doctors kept me in ICU isolation between exploratory surgeries to clean out abscesses and visits to interventional radiology to place drains. I received a daunting diagnosis: sepsis. I had to remain on intravenous antibiotics for the next several months and let the drain remove excess fluid collections to prevent further infection risk. Discharge day came a few weeks later with a garter around my leg securing the drain running down my back. The drain emptied
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