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AI Combined with Blood Test for Early Sepsis Detection

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Doctors say combining a simple blood test with artificial intelligence could help diagnose sepsis faster and identify patients at the highest risk of severe complications.

Sepsis is a serious condition where the body doesn’t respond well to infection. It can lead to septic shock, which damages organs like the lungs, kidneys, and liver. It can even cause death, with around 11 million sepsis-related deaths each year worldwide.

A new way using both a blood test and AI could find sepsis earlier and save lives. Experts combined the unique signs of sepsis with AI to predict who might get organ failure and die.

AI Combined with Blood Test for Early Sepsis Detection

They will talk about their findings at a medical conference next month. Dr. Lisa Mellhammar from Lund University in Sweden said, “It’s important to find sepsis before organs start failing. We need a new way to diagnose sepsis faster because it kills millions of people every year.”

She thinks a blood test with a personalized risk model “can save lives by giving a better sepsis diagnosis and telling who might get sicker.”

The researchers studied blood samples from over 1,300 adults admitted to a hospital with suspected sepsis. They found patterns in certain proteins related to how the body fights sepsis. Then, they used these patterns to teach an AI model to predict who might get septic shock.

Patients were divided into low, medium, and high risk groups. The AI showed that higher risk meant a higher chance of dying.

The researchers also found groups of proteins that could predict problems in different organs like the heart or kidneys. They split patients into five risk groups based on their chance of organ problems and death.

Dr. Mellhammar said, “A quick test that finds sepsis better and predicts who might do worse seems possible. But we need more tests before using this in hospitals.”

Dr. Ron Daniels from the UK Sepsis Trust said, “We need to find sepsis faster and help the sickest patients first. This research could help us understand sepsis better and improve how we treat it.”

This news comes as NHS England plans to start a new rule next month. It lets patients and their families get a second opinion quickly about their care. This rule is partly because of Martha, a girl who died of sepsis in 2021.

Source: TheGuardian