Critical Care Doctors Report an Increase in Sepsis in the ICU


bioMérieux, a world leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics, announces the latest results of the bioMérieux Sepsis Survey Project regarding the prevalence of sepsis in U.S. hospitals:

 64 percent of those surveyed said sepsis is increasing in Americas ICUs and impacting a growing number of younger patients
 17 percent said they have seen an increase in sepsis and septicemia in young patients, which they attribute to antibiotic resistant organisms that are difficult to treat with standard antibiotics
 Over 30 percent reported that antibiotic resistance is to blame for the increasing rate of sepsis in U.S. hospitals
 98 percent reported that they need a rapid test to help diagnose sepsis in their patients
 19 percent of those surveyed said they have seen an increase in fatalities among critical care patients due to antibiotic resistant organisms that could not be treated with standard antibiotics
 83 percent said antibiotic resistance is a major problem, as witnessed by increasing sepsis fatalities

The bioMérieux Sepsis Survey Project surveyed and interviewed 187 critical care specialists at the 2012 Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) conference. bioMérieux has been tracking sepsis prevalence trends and has surveyed and interviewed thousands of doctors, nurses and pharmacists over five years.

According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

 Sepsis is increasing among those 65 years of age and older the typical risk group for septicemia and septic shock as well as in younger patients.
 Early and aggressive treatment of sepsis dramatically improves the chances of survival
 The cost to the U.S. healthcare system to treat sepsis is enormous and growing by double digits each year. In 2008, an estimated $14.6 billion was spent on hospitalizations for septicemia, and from 1997 through 2008, the inflation-adjusted aggregate costs for treating patients hospitalized for this condition increased on average annually by 11.9 percent.
 CDC researchers in another study found that sepsis hospitalizations increased by more than 300 percent from 1979 (164,000 cases) to 2000 (660,000 cases).
 Severe sepsis costs in excess of $20,000 to treat putting it on par with heart attacks and other acute care conditions. Sepsis patients typically require nearly 20 days of hospitalization.
 On a global scale, sepsis is a leading cause of death among newborns, according to the Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal.

After nearly five years of data collection, the bioMérieux Sepsis Survey Project has confirmed that sepsis trends are not improving in either developed or undeveloped countries, says Nedal Safwat, PhD, director of product marketing for bioMérieux, Inc. This alarming trend is why bioMérieux has made the rapid diagnosis and treatment of sepsis one of our top corporate responsibilities. As devastating as sepsis can be, if identified and treated early, it can be preventable. Time is critical and we at bioMérieux are dedicated to providing physicians with as much advanced notice as possible to avert the death and disability caused by sepsis.

The bioMérieux VIDAS® B.R.A.H.M.S. PCT (procalcitonin) assay was cleared by the FDA in 2007. It is intended to aid in the risk assessment of critically ill patients on their first day of ICU admission for progression to severe sepsis and septic shock.

PCT is a natural human protein that is released into the bloodstream when there is a severe bacterial infection the leading underlying cause of sepsis. The bioMérieux VIDAS PCT assay is a 20-minute test that measures PCT levels and helps doctors assess the risk of sepsis in a patient well before severe damage occurs.

One promising finding from the SCCM survey reflects a dramatic increase in awareness on the part of critical care clinicians. Eighty percent of those surveyed reported that they are aware of the benefits of testing for procalcitonin (PCT) levels in suspected sepsis patients in order to expedite treatment.

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