First steps in suspected sepsis

Emilie Belley-Côté

What should be our first steps when we suspect sepsis?

Emilie Belley-Côté, MD: I think the first steps are to send cultures. Cultures from all sites that we can think of as infectious sites. And when in doubt, start patients on antibiotics, and if they seem to be hypotensive, give them fluids. Those are my first steps when I suspect sepsis.

Over time, after 48 hours, if the cultures are negative or if I have an alternative diagnosis, then I will stop antibiotics but have a very low threshold to suspect sepsis.

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