Dangers of Delay in Diagnosis or Improper Treatment of Sepsis in Oregon

Emergency Department Errors sepsis

Learn Liability when the Delay in Diagnosis or Improper Treatment of Sepsis in Oregon Harms You or a Loved One

Everyone in their lifetime will face some sort of infection. Many infections are mild and may not require any treatment at all. Other infections may require the use of antibiotics or other drugs. While an infection may be easily treated, when there is a delay in diagnosing the infection, it can lead to a more serious condition called sepsis. Sepsis is very serious and must be treated immediately. Sepsis can lead to severe complications, including death. When a physician fails to diagnose an infection in a timely manner which then leads to sepsis, this is considered medical malpractice.  Yes, any improper treatment of sepsis in Oregon can be the result of medical negligence and errors that could have been preventable.

What is Sepsis?

Sepsis is caused by an infection that is either left untreated or is improperly treated. Infections can start anywhere in the body, and causes of infections may be bacterial, viral, fungal, or parasitic. Sepsis occurs due to the spread of the untreated infection which then sends the immune system into overdrive to combat the infection. 

Who is at Risk for Sepsis?

People who may be more at risk for sepsis include the following:

  • People with weakened immune systems
  • Young children
  • People with chronic medical conditions
  • Elderly people over the age of 65

How is Sepsis Diagnosed?

Sepsis is diagnosed with the following:

  • Blood tests such as complete blood count and blood cultures to detect if there is an infection in the blood
  • Urine tests to identify if there is an infection in your urine
  • Imaging such as the use of CT scans and X-rays to identify signs of infection (i.e. chest x-ray) 

How is Sepsis Treated? 

Treatment for sepsis depends on the source, but may include the following:

  • Intravenous fluids
  • Medications to keep the blood pressure stable
  • Oxygen
  • Antibiotics if appropriate
  • Other medications to treat the infection
  • Dialysis
  • Use of a ventilator for respiratory support

Signs and Symptoms of Sepsis

Signs and symptoms of sepsis include the following: 

  • Fever
  • Hypotension
  • High heart rate
  • Confusion
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain
  • Confusion
  • Rash
  • Swelling
  • Decreased urine output

Complications of Sepsis

Complications of untreated sepsis include the following:

  • Kidney failure
  • Amputation
  • Tissue damage
  • Lung damage
  • Brain damage
  • Other organ damage

How are Complications Related to Sepsis Caused by Medical Malpractice?

While not all cases of sepsis are caused by medical malpractice, there are times when sepsis and the complications related to sepsis may be caused by improper medical treatment. Examples of medical malpractice in relation to sepsis include the following:

  • Failing to diagnose an infection before it leads to sepsis
  • Failing to diagnose sepsis
  • Failing to properly treat the infection
  • Failing to properly treat sepsis
  • Treating the infection locally rather than systemically (i.e. topical treatment vs. use of oral antibiotics 
  • Failing to conduct proper testing to diagnose infection
  • Failing to properly assess the patient 
  • Dismissing a patient’s complaints
  • Improper oversight of novice physicians

These are just a few of the many ways in which medical malpractice may have caused you or your loved one’s sepsis complications. 

Ask Our Medical Malpractice Lawyers for Help With the Improper Treatment of Sepsis in Oregon

If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice contact the Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover.

Our law firm handles cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Sisters, Madras, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, La Grande, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton,  Cottage Grove, Florence, Oregon City, Springfield, Keizer, Grants Pass, McMinnville, Tualatin, West Linn, Forest Grove, Wilsonville, Newberg, Roseburg, Lake Oswego, Klamath Falls, Happy Valley, Tigard, Ashland, Milwakie, Coos Bay, The Dalles,  St. Helens, Sherwood, Central Point, Canby, Troutdale, Hermiston, Silverton, Hood River, Newport, Prineville, Astoria, Tillamook, Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Vancouver, Washington.

We also have an office in Minneapolis, Minnesota and take medical malpractice cases throughout the Twin Cities, including St. Paul, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Dakota County, Washington County, Anoka County, Scott County, Blaine, Stillwater, and Saint Paul Minnesota.

For a free case evaluation


(541) 385-1999 in Bend, Oregon
(503) 479-3646 in Portland, Oregon
(612) 444-3374 in Minnesota

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