Jeffrey Davis 5K spreads sepsis awareness

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A local woman is raising awareness about sepsis, an illness she knew nothing about until it took the life of her husband within 24 hours of his first symptom.

Sepsis is defined as the body’s reaction to infection. It kills 258,000 Americans every year.

Lisa Davis now hosts a 5K in his memory and wants other to know how fatal sepsis can be.

According to Dr. Ronald Rains, Director of ICU at Memorial Hospital, symptoms of sepsis include fever, elevated heart rate, breathing fast, elevated white blood count, and low blood pressure.

Jeffrey Davis had been experiencing some of those symptoms when he decided to go to the hospital.

“Any kind of infection can cause it.” Lisa said. “An abscess tooth, urinary tract infection, a cut, any kind of cut on your body can cause the infection that can trigger sepsis.”

Doctors said controlling the source of the infection is the key to recovery, but the source of Jeffrey’s infection was never found. That’s why Lisa wants to get the word out.

“I want them to know the symptoms of sepsis,” Lisa said. “I want them to be able to at least suspect it before it gets too late because time is of the essence with sepsis, and if you let it go too long, your … mortality rate goes up 8 percent every hour it goes undiagnosed.”

“The numbers are going up, or at least the number of cases of severe sepsis are going up, and the reason is because the populations are getting older.” Rains said. “We’re using a lot of drugs for different things that suppress the body’s immune system. Cancer drugs, drugs for things like rheumatoid arthritis, that kind of thing make a person prone to infection.”

The Jeffrey Davis 5K is scheduled for June 27 at Monument Valley Park. If you are interested in participating, visit www.JeffreyDavis5K.org. For more information on sepsis head to www.SepsisAlliance.org.

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