Sepsis pp 7-24 | Cite as

Sepsis Definitions

  • Debasree BanerjeeEmail author
  • Mitchell M. Levy
Part of the Respiratory Medicine book series (RM)


Sepsis is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States [1]. Mortality in the United States from sepsis is more than the total number of deaths caused by prostate cancer, breast cancer, and AIDS combined [2]. It causes more hospitalizations than acute myocardial infarction and has become a leading cause of hospital expenditure [3, 4]. Ninety percent of physicians feel that sepsis is a “significant financial burden on the health care system in their country” [5]. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention cite an aging population, chronic illness, invasive procedures, immunosuppressive drugs, chemotherapy, organ transplantation, antibiotic resistance, and increased awareness as causes for the increase in number of reported cases of sepsis each year in the United States. Despite the significance held by this disease in medicine it has been subject to many varying definitions over the years. The ongoing changes in the “definition” of sepsis reflect both a new emphasis on precision, needed for research, and an ever-expanding knowledge of its pathophysiology.


Sepsis Septic shock Sepsis treatment Sepsis definitions Sepsis consensus Critical care Surviving sepsis campaign 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep MedicineAlpert/Brown Medical SchoolProvidenceUSA

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