Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Student Scholarship

Date Written

Summer 7-27-2017

Document Type


Course Number


Course Name

Advanced Pathophysiology

Professor’s Name

Dr. Chovan


Sepsis, Septic Shock, SOFA, hypotension, nursing consideration, multiple organ dysfunction

Subject Categories

Critical Care Nursing | Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing



The diagnosis of sepsis has long been part of medicine, however ambiguous definitions, treatment modalities, and research criteria have not provided a unified understanding of the disease. In 2016, international healthcare practitioners convened a panel of experts and developed criteria that defined sepsis as ‘life-threatening organ dysfunction caused by dysregulated host response to infection’. The pathogenesis of sepsis and septic shock is complex and make understanding physiological host response to infection difficult. Evidence shows that with each passing hour patient mortality is increased when treatment is withheld. Sepsis has proven an elusive diagnosis where one size does not fit all in treatment and management. Since the inception of the Surviving Sepsis Campaign, guidelines focus care to satisfy elements that, when done collectively, improve patient outcomes. Nurses play a vital role in the management of suspected sepsis by initiating bundle protocols provided by the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. One agreed upon diagnostic tool is the quick SOFA (sequential organ failure assessment) score. Critical to improving patient mortality require the bedside nurse to understand sepsis pathophysiology, signs and symptoms, and anticipate disease progression while monitoring the patient clinical response to treatment.

Keywords: sepsis, septic shock, SOFA, pathophysiology, nurse consideration, Surviving Sepsis Campaign



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