Published on September 30, 2016

Sepsis standard refined, focused

Revision in criteria regarding the definition of sepsis and septic shock, published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), now targets Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) scoring to direct medical response for sepsis and septic shock.

Calculating a SOFA score is part of outreach education ongoing by Gundersen anesthesiologist Dave Morrison, MD, Pulmonary/Critical Care. Dr. Morrison and Connie McCullick, CNS, ACNP, Adult Critical Care, have been visiting area hospitals and providers to discuss definitions, treatment and referral guidelines of sepsis/septic shock.

The new definition replaces those from 1991 and 2001. The new definition is referenced as Sepsis-3 (from the Third International Consensus Definitions for Sepsis and Septic Shock). The citation is JAMA 2016; 315:801-10. An overview is available here.

Dr. Morrison explains that the tool provides a more precise model in assessing patients and next steps, including when to transfer a patient to a Gundersen hospital if a patient has a diagnosed or suspected blood infection.

"The big question for referring providers is 'when do we keep the patient and when do we transfer the patient,'" says Dr. Morrison. "We are trying to help guide referring hospitals and providers in how to make the decision."

For information on the calculator and Dr. Morrison's presentation, reach him via MedLink at (800) 336-5465. In La Crosse, call (608) 775-5465.

Sepsis Table 1

Sepsis: SOFA score

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