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Treatment of septicaemia

Some bacteria that cause meningitis can also cause septicaemia*. It is possible to have meningitis or septicaemia alone, or they may both occur together.

*Many medical experts now use the term sepsis instead of septicaemia.

Preet meningococcal bacterial meningitis case study

What is septicaemia?

Septicaemia is a term used to describe blood poisoning. Septicaemia can trigger sepsis, a life-threatening reaction to an infection. It happens when your immune system overacts to an infection and starts to damage your body’s own tissues and organs.

How is septicaemia treated?

Someone with septicaemia needs rapid admission to hospital and urgent treatment with intravenous antibiotics (antibiotics given directly into a vein). Some people will need specialist care in an intensive care unit. This may include treatment to maintain blood pressure, breathing and support other vital organs.

Recovering from septicaemia

If treated quickly, most people will make a good recovery from septicaemia. However, for some recovery can be prolonged and people can be left with long-term after effects.

Don’t face meningitis alone. Contact our nurse-led Helpline for information and support on 0808 80 10 388 or email us at helpline@meningitisnow.org