Post-Sepsis Syndrome and Sepsis Survivors

What is Post-Sepsis Syndrome?

Post-Sepsis Syndrome (PSS) is a condition that affects up to 50 percent of sepsis survivors. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, many people who survive sepsis recover completely and their lives return to normal. However, as with some other illnesses requiring intensive medical care, some patients have long-term effects. These physical and psychological problems may not become apparent for several weeks after being treated for sepsis, and may include symptoms such as:

  • Insomnia, difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • Nightmares, vivid hallucinations, panic attacks
  • Disabling muscle and joint pains
  • Decreased mental/cognitive functioning
  • Loss of self-esteem and self-belief
  • Organ dysfunction (kidney failure, respiratory problems, etc.)
  • Amputation

It is important for healthcare providers, patients and patients’ families to understand the impact of sepsis after the acute phase of treatment. Below are several different resources that address life after sepsis.