Patient Comments: Sepsis - Experience


Please describe your experience with blood poisoning. Submit Your Comment

Comment from: John k, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: October 20

I have had sepsis and blood poisoning for 2 months. I have been treated with Rocephin and Zosyn IV. The doctors couldn't find the bacteria causing it. I assume it was antibiotic-resistant gonorrhea since my symptoms started after unprotected sex.

Comment from: richjhnb, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: November 19

I'm a 40 years old male and I was diagnosed with having septic shock and kidney failure from blood poisoning which was caused by a cellulitis infection of my right leg that has lymphedema. The infection caused these white colored unsightly skin sores to develop around my ankle. November 15th I began to feel ill. I thought it was the flu, but it progressively worsened. I would not get out of bed, began falling and had to have help getting up. My mom called 911 morning of November 30th, I was admitted to the ICU, survived and got home December 8th.

Comment from: [email protected], 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 22

I was diagnosed with E. coli infection at an emergency room in the hospital. I had eaten romaine lettuce from the 99 cent store. Hours later I passed a 2 inch blood clot. I went to sleep and another huge blood clot. I drove home over 100 miles and was taken to by ambulance to the hospital. The 1st report was E. coli, I was given antibiotics spectrum, etc. My final diagnosis was sepsis or blood poisoning, I can’t understand the difference between the two diagnoses. I feel weak all the time.

Comment from: Jan, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: October 24

My partner had an operation on his neck but was sent home with a weeping wound. On arriving home he became very disoriented, clammy, shivering, had a rapid heartbeat and difficulty breathing from blood poisoning. The following day he returned to the hospital but having waited over two hours in Accident and Emergency without being seen he returned home. Four days after discharge he went to his general physician who sent him back to the hospital. He was kept in overnight but was again discharged as he wasn't considered serious. He died shortly after.

Comment from: grateful, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: October 19

A decade ago, after a double mastectomy for breast cancer and 6 rounds of chemotherapy, I began to have high fever and chills. I also had a terrible headache as well as confusion. Someone took me to the emergency room. I was in the ICU for several days, in and out of consciousness. I had an IV antibiotic that was so caustic that my arm was packed in ice and I was on a morphine drip. They said I was in septic shock with blood poisoning and it was the only way to save my life.

Comment from: niteflier, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: April 20

I became ill from blood poisoning at the end of February 2019. I went by ambulance 2 times, giving my symptoms. I never heard of sepsis. Both times I was sent home. The first time the doctor gave me 10 medicines and the second time a different doctor gave me nothing. Just sent me home, and as sick as I was, didn't ask if I had any assist at home. The 3rd time the ambulance wouldn’t come because they had been here twice. My mother called for a cab and had told the dispatcher our problem. She called an ambulance instead.

Comment from: Nettie, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: July 17

My mom had pneumonia and was hospitalized. After 3 weeks she died of septic shock from blood poisoning. Her urine function stopped first. What the hospital staff found amazing is that she had a blood pressure of 40/17, with a heart rate of 95, for a couple of hours before her heart rate came down slowly and she passed. One would think that the lower the blood pressure, the higher the heart rate! She obviously by that time gave one small breath like every 10 seconds. It was obviously a very difficult time for us.

Comment from: keek, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 03

I initially developed sepsis 2 years ago, I've had blood poisoning 4 times, twice from a urinary tract infection. Being diabetic my symptoms were vague but I knew something was wrong. I felt weak, couldn't get my breath, and felt extremely tired. I went to the emergency room and almost didn't make it that day, my white count was 4 times normal. They put me on IV and gave me Rocephin, I think that's the name. My blood pressure was 60/32 and I had fever. Don't mess with it, this is a cruel disease that killed my mom in no time. I've been admitted 2 times with this.

Comment from: Loren, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 07

I developed sepsis one year ago after an overnight hernia repair turned into a nightmare. The surgeon nicked my bowel and sewed me back up. I do not remember much except I was told I was on life support for approximately one month, the ICU for over a month; thus ensuing in a five month hospital stay. A colostomy bag was also installed after another emergency surgery to save my life. I could not read, write, see, have still cognitive impairment; the list goes on. I also suffer from severe daily sweats and chills, sometimes hundreds of times a day. Yet my doctors are telling me I am fine. I feel as though I have a severe case of the flu, every single day. Also I am 64 and was in pretty good health previously. Obviously I am also very frightened.


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Comment from: SFS leader, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: January 11

I had sepsis twice. The first time I was 11, and was bitten by a rabid dog, and apparently got her fleas on me; which then bit me, and I scratched at the bites so bad that somehow it spread to my bloodstream. I had a massive fever, very bad headaches, and grogginess. They took me to the emergency room. I got some shot and I got better over time. My second time of blood poisoning, I was getting my pre-hydration for chemotherapy and my port wasn't cooperating and I started being symptomatic as I returned to the hotel I was staying at. I had insomnia, severe headaches, and a very low core temperature. I had to go back to the hospital, and I don't know what happened next because I fainted.

Comment from: Jenniferliz, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 28

A friend of mine I was living with who was a caregiver noticed a red streak going from my foot up my leg and immediately told me I had blood poisoning. She gave me an old home remedy to use until I was able to make it to hospital in the morning. I was 5 months pregnant at the time.

Comment from: Big d, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: March 31

I was admitted to the hospital for an angiogram. In the process of inserting the catheter my body was infected. I was transferred from the regional hospital to the larger central hospital. I spent the next four days in and out of consciousness. When I was awake I was fighting with the male nurse and telling the kids to go out and locate blue cars. They were seven and ten. I eventually had a quadruple bypass and was in the hospital for 30 days. One bright spot was that I got to see Tombstone about 50 times.

Comment from: trm2008, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 21

I had a kidney removed due to 7 cm renal cell carcinoma. It was removed by hand assisted laparoscopy. Evidently the surgeon failed to repair the mesenteric defect, and 4 weeks later I was in the emergency room with horrible unrelenting pain. I had to have a laparotomy to remove over 5 feet of necrotic small bowel that had migrated though the defect in the mesentery and strangulated. I woke up in ICU still intubated with very low blood pressure, very high heart rate, and metabolic acidosis. Septic shock. I'm very lucky to be alive.

Comment from: GUY, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: September 16

I pricked my finger in the garden, drew blood, then the finger went a bit inflamed, and arm felt like someone hit it with a hammer. Then a tickle started in the back of throat like flu, then chills and fevers, I was dizzy, staggering around house, and vomiting. I went to emergency department and they thought it was gastric. Heart rate was 180 and I had low blood pressure; they put me on fluids and stabilized me. Then 5 nights I was in intensive care, and the blood poisoning spread to my heart valve. I had infective endocarditis, survived two heart surgeries for repair and replacement of mitral valve. I’m lucky to have made it.

Comment from: Becca, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 30

My husband received a power port and percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube for chemotherapy on 3/7 and started chemotherapy and radiation on 3/19. On 4/2 he was in the hospital with high fever, heart rate and blood pressure. After 3 days he was released as non-specific infection. He did chemotherapy every Wednesday 5 times and each time I reported to the lead doctor he would run a high fever and all of the same symptoms as above and was told "it can"t be from the Cisplatin, the dose is not high enough", but they never tried to find out what the problem was. On 4/23 (18 days later) he was back in with 104 fever and 158 blood pressure, his heart rate was out of control and a parotid gland under his left ear was huge, the size of a lime they said. He was finally released on 4/30 with bacteremia, sepsis! We did home IV antibiotic infusions 24/7 for 22 days. Since my husband was not healing we saw OSU Infectious Disease, who were dumbfounded that the port was still in place, it should have been pulled out they claimed! In a couple of days our surgeon pulled the port claiming he was never advised by the hospital he works with. Now we have just started with IV infusions for 1/2 hour every day at the hospital with a stronger antibiotic, post port removal. We were told by the hospital, "someone broke protocol accessing his port" as the culprit for this, but right now everyone is pointing fingers since they all failed to recognize this in early April or did not send him home then with antibiotics.

Comment from: swedelady13, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: May 01

Three years ago my husband went into the hospital with severe abdominal pain, had a gastroscopy 3 days later, had vertigo while in the hospital, went back in next night with numbness on right side, sent home, back in 24 hours later, and told he had a mild stroke. Less than 24 hours later he was admitted to ICU with dropped blood pressure and high pulse. Back to room. Next day he was out of his head and in restraints. Next night he was back into ICU with pneumonia. He was sedated and treated for 32 hours and was back to the room. He was dead 3 days later from sepsis. Blood culture found staph and gram negative bacteria in blood after he passed. Don"t know where sepsis came from, didn"t think to do autopsy. It is very confusing. He was diagnosed with bile gastritis first trip in, then sensory stroke right side, then pneumonia, then sepsis. Infection did not show up on blood work in emergency room all 3 times he went in.


Bacterial Infections 101: Types, Symptoms, and Treatments See Slideshow
Comment from: corie, 35-44 (Patient) Published: April 11

My severe sepsis was caused by a ruptured appendix and a small bowel obstruction. I was on life support for two weeks with kidney and lung failure. I was hospitalized for a total of 7 weeks, heavy duty antibiotics and six blood transfusions. My blood type is O RH- (rare), I was given less than 50% chance to live, my prognosis was grave. Fifteen inches of my small intestine was removed, but I have no colostomy bag, I had an abscess on my pelvis which was drained by a catheter inserted through my hip. I am now walking around with a partially collapsed lung, but will make a full recovery. I"ve been told I am a miracle. This I already know!

Comment from: Country girl, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: March 13

On returning from a European cruise I thought that I was suffering from a chronic migraine headache and a chill in my back after travelling on a very cold Emirates flight from Dubai to New Zealand. Five days after arriving home the prognosis was septicemia resulting in immediate IV drips of antibiotics. The blood count broke all records for the area in which I live. Thank goodness for a doctor's quick diagnosis. I had earlier jammed my finger in a door resulting in slight damage to the cuticle of my middle finger. No real cut! Hard to believe that was all it took for the virus to enter my body with almost lethal results.

Comment from: kins, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: January 13

My 84 year old mother who has bowel and secondary liver cancer became suddenly very ill and was taken to the hospital and we were told she had pneumonia septicemia, pleurisy and some renal failure. Her blood pressure dropped to 66/43. We were told she would not recover and would not be taken to ICU or resuscitated due to her poor condition. Somehow she is still here 5 days later medically fit for now, sitting up in bed putting her make-up on. Medics are baffled and don't know how she made it.

Comment from: Nanny, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 08

I suddenly got severe back pain and eventually could not move my legs and could not be touched anywhere. I had to be taken around piggyback that was very painful. I wouldn't wish it on anyone. Luckily I got treated within 24 hours. The sepsis was in my lungs and it went into my spine. I went through hell for 8 weeks and even longer. I had to wear a body brace and a full neck brace and after I went through 8 weeks of IV antibiotics and 6 months of oral antibiotics I did make a good recovery. I do have bone loss in my spine but very lucky for my recovery.

Comment from: Icicle, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 20

I started with flu symptoms, banging headache, shivering, high temperature, and extreme tiredness. I couldn’t get an appointment with the doctor for a few days, so I eventually saw the nurse consultant, who checked my vital signs. After an ECG, she called an ambulance as the readings were abnormal. It seems I had a severe kidney infection, because there was a stone blocking the tube which drains the kidney. I was taken to theatre and a stent was put in to drain my kidney. I then spent 4 days on intravenous antibiotics, and was discharged with another 10 days of antibiotics. I need to go back next week to plan what happens next. I still feel exhausted and week, the slightest exertion brings me out in a sweat. The consultant said I was a bit septic.

Comment from: happy girl76, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 16

We had a daughter who had got sick with what we thought was an infected hair at the top of her private area. It then turned into a very large and was right above her vaginal area, which over time continued to get bigger. She had been to the doctor on several appointments and was put in hospital several times and that is when we found out it was blood poisoning. Shortly after that she passed away.

Comment from: azlady, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 04

I had a vaginal hysterectomy on April 25, a few days later I could not urinate, gynecologist said no to a regular catheter so I went to my urologist. He said the same thing, no to regular catheter, they gave me self-catheters. I used those 4 days then they stopped working. I would try to urinate for hours at night and would pass out on the toilet (5 times), so I went to the hospital and finally I got relief from a regular catheter. But the next day about 6 I couldn’t breathe so had to go to the hospital by ambulance. In the emergency room they took forever, I was ready to leave, but they told me I was being admitted for pneumonia. When I got to my room my blood pressure crashed, I was unconscious, and woke up middle of next day in the ICU, with the doctor putting an IV in my throat. I was in the ICU for 3 days on 6 bags of stuff going into my neck, I was in a regular room 2 days. I had to have 12 units of blood, and I guess I swelled up like a balloon; didn’t look like myself. I’m so thankful that I went to the hospital, I wouldn’t have made it through the night.

Comment from: Mel, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 24

I am a 44 year old female, I had been feeling unwell for weeks and having funny attacks. On one morning I woke up with extreme pain in my abdomen followed by diarrhea and vomiting and struggling to breathe. I passed out the first time and woke up with enough time to tell my husband to ring an ambulance after that I remember nothing. I had a full on seizure losing control of all my bodily functions. The ambulance arrived including the Mobile Intensive Care Ambulance (MICA) unit where they spent the next 90 minutes trying to get me to regain consciousness as my blood pressure was so low. I spent the next 4 days in hospital.

Comment from: Jeanie, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 10

I had been taking Enbrel since 2006. It worked great for my RA and then it was not working. It was giving me sinus infections and RA nodules. One nodule on my right wrist was very painful. On Mother's Day 2013, I went to the ER in an ambulance. I don't remember anything for the first two days in ICU. I had sepsis from the arthritis nodule. Doctors saved my life! I almost died within 12 hours, and it was very scary for my family. I was on a four-week daily IV dose of antibiotics and then three weeks of oral antibiotics. Sepsis is a very painful infection, and I am very lucky I survived! And I no longer take Enbrel.

Comment from: Jon, Female (Caregiver) Published: December 13

My girlfriend has septicemia and has had it for 4 months. She has had blood transfusions and antibiotics her blood read is 7 and they are talking about bone marrow transplant; she has loads of antibiotics.

Comment from: 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 13

I had leg ulcers, a constant whistling in my head, hot sweats, and weight loss, and I got no sleep. I was always tired.