Pre-Physical Therapy, Student Life

Sepsis in Older Adults

The first time I heard the term sepsis ( or maybe the first time that it stuck ) was during my time volunteering and observing in the hospital.

It was my first time seeing an inpatient setting and I learned sooo much about how different physical therapy careers can be from setting to setting. It was a whole new world!

I heard the physical therapist say something about ‘sepsis’ and I asked him what it meant.

I vaguely remember him explaining how older adults can develop sepsis after a urinary tract infection – and how something that doesn’t seem very threatening can actually turn into something serious.

Since I don’t remember much about his explanation I think it’s a good idea for me to make today’s Medical Term Monday about it.

[ SIDE NOTE ] Definitely work on getting inpatient hours in hospital early on in your application process because they take longer to prepare for. Sometimes you have to go through the hospital’s orientation or get a photo name tag created. I also remember I had to go out and get a TB test before I could be in the hospital.

medical term :: sepsis

Definition: Sepsis refers to a bacterial infection in the bloodstream or body tissues. This is a very broad term covering the presence of many types of microscopic disease-causing organisms.medical dictionary

“Sepsis happens when an infection you already have – in your skin, lungs, urinary tract or somewhere else – triggers a chain reaction throughout your body.” – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

I was reading about sepsis on the CDC’s website and found this 4 minute video about it.

It is called: Sepsis in Older Americans: Saving Lives through Early Recognition. Really great summary if you want to learn more!

Find it >>>here.


Did you ever hear about sepsis during volunteer or observation hours?




3 thoughts on “Sepsis in Older Adults

  1. Thank you for the education. One of my mom’s friends had surgery, and then Linda almost ended up dying because she got an infection that sent her into septic shock. It was terrifying for everyone! It was a big wake-up call for her and her husband, and she’s on a healthier journey now!

    1. Laura Beth, that’s a crazy experience they went through – jeeze! I am glad she is getting healthier and glad you shared that – it really helps me learn what it is and commit it to memory because now I have another real life story. Thank you so much :))

      1. Happy to help! It’s tough to talk about, but it’s one story that I will always remember. It’s helped me be more mindful of my own body, its warning signs, and the choices that I make!

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