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New blood test can diagnose sepsis much faster than before

sepsis_bed.jpgA new blood test has been developed which is 1,000 times more effective at picking up on sepsis.

Sepsis is a deadly condition that can develop as a side-effect of an infection, sometimes due to ineffective treatment of the initial infection. If sepsis isn't treated, the patient can go into septic shock and this can lead to long term injuries and sometimes death.

The new sepsis test, known as the BacCapSeq platform, screens for 307 known disease-causing bacteria as well as antibiotic resistance.

Researchers are working to have results from the test in a matter of hours, rather than three days which it can currently take to diagnose the deadly infection.

We recently reported how survivors of sepsis were raising awareness about the condition which kills more people in the UK each year than bowel, breast and prostate cancer combined.

In the UK, sepsis kills 44,000 people every year so being able to spot in patients within hours would be life-saving as the number of deaths relating to sepsis in hospitals is increasing.

Hannah Bottomley, clinical negligence solicitor at Potter Rees Dolan, said:

As sepsis is one of the leading causes of death in the UK killing, anything which can be done to identify the condition can only be a positive. Sepsis is sometimes referred to as blood poisoning as it is a build-up of toxins in the blood, often as a result of a bacterial infection.

Being able to identify the strain of bacteria causing the infection and build-up of toxins will enable those treating patients with sepsis to specifically target the cause of the infection (the bacteria) and provide patients with targeted treatment. I hope this will lead to increased recovery rates and look forward to hearing how the BacCapSeq platform develops.

Hannah Bottomley is a clinical negligence solicitor here at Potter Rees Dolan. Should you have any queries about clinical negligence issues or indeed any other aspect of this article and wish to speak to Hannah or any other member of the team please contact us on 0161 237 5888 or email Hannah directly.