Sepsis happens when an infection that exists in the skin, lungs, urinary tract or somewhere else—triggers a chain reaction throughout the body.

Symptoms of sepsis include high fever, shortness of breath, confusion, extreme pain and clammy skin. Treatment includes antibiotics, oxygen, IV fluids and treating the source of the infection.

Sepsis is a major cause of tissue injury and organ dysfunction in patients hospitalized in intensive care units. Without timely treatment, sepsis can rapidly lead to death.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention