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Highly Accessed Editorial

Increasing awareness of sepsis: World Sepsis Day

Jean-Louis Vincent

Author Affiliations

Department of Intensive Care, Erasme Hospital, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Route de Lennik 808, B-1070 Brussels, Belgium

Critical Care 2012, 16:152  doi:10.1186/cc11511

Published: 13 September 2012

First paragraph (this article has no abstract)

The first ever World Sepsis Day (WSD), a great opportunity to increase awareness about sepsis, is going to be held on Sept. 13. We already have World Diabetes Day, Breast Cancer Awareness Day, World Asthma Day, World AIDS day, even a Rare Disease Day, so why not a day dedicated especially to sepsis? After all, sepsis is estimated to affect at least 18 million individuals worldwide, and with mortality rates of 25% to 30% [1,2], severe sepsis kills more individuals annually than prostate cancer, breast cancer, and HIV/AIDS combined, and the numbers of cases are increasing every year. Yet it is a condition that is poorly understood by those outside of medicine. Almost 90% of the public have never even heard of sepsis, and of those who have, less than 60% realize it is a leading cause of death [3]. But if the condition is diagnosed early and managed appropriately, lives can be saved.