Two in five cases of sepsis worldwide are found in children under five, according to data released today by The Lancet.
BUzz spoke to Kavita Butler from Mini First Aid in Bournemouth. Kavita’s work includes raising awareness and recognition of sepsis, as well as providing first aid training to local parents. She discussed the key signs of Sepsis to look out for in babies and children.
She said: “Babies between zero and 12 months will have sudden changes in body temperature but will feel abnormally cold to the touch. They may experience difficulty breathing, as well as fits and convulsions.
“A baby’s skin may look mottled and slightly blue-ish. They may suffer from diarrhoea. They may also have a rash that doesn’t fade when you press on it.”
Kavita also pointed out that babies may also be very lethargic and difficult to wake up and might not be feeding well.
The signs are similar in older children. Kavita said: “With children, it is a case of personal hygiene, there are instances where a child could have a normal fall in the garden or playground and get a scrape to their knee. If that is to get infected it can lead to sepsis.”
She added: “Any wound we recommend cleaning with water of any debris for over a minute and covering carefully.”
Kavita encouraged parents to “go with their gut instincts”.
“If a parent has any fears the advice is to seek medical attention, take them to A&E and say you suspect your child has sepsis. When diagnosed early, it can be treated. Sadly when not it can lead to a fatality.”