The Recognition and Management of Maternal Sepsis

  • Karen Orr
  • Damien Hughes
  • Claire Jamison
  • Paul Fogarty


Sepsis can present at any stage of pregnancy and, given its frequently insidious course, should never be underestimated. Pregnant or recently pregnant women can rapidly descend into fulminant sepsis with resultant multi-organ failure unless early identification and prompt treatment are instituted. Frequently the combination of a young population alongside the physiological changes of pregnancy masks the development and progression of simple infections into life-threatening situations.

Worldwide, 10.7 % of maternal deaths result from sepsis, with most occurring in developing nations. For every 1 woman who dies from sepsis, approximately 14 suffer from severe sepsis or septic shock, with an estimated mortality rate of 10 % in the developed and up to 33 % in the developing world. With early recognition and aggressive, appropriate monitoring and treatment, the burden of morbidity and mortality of maternal sepsis will invariably be reduced.

This chapter will focus on the key messages concerned with the diagnosis and management of maternal sepsis.


Septic Shock Severe Sepsis Mean Arterial Pressure Maternal Death Bacterial Vaginosis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karen Orr
    • 1
  • Damien Hughes
    • 1
  • Claire Jamison
    • 1
  • Paul Fogarty
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Ulster HospitalBelfastUK
  2. 2.Department of Obstetrics and GynaecologyUlster HospitalBelfastUK
  3. 3.Royal College of Obstetricians and GynaecologistsLondonUK

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