PloS one 2017 02 1512(2) e0171422 doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0171422
Limited data are available on sepsis in low-resource settings, particularly outside of urban referral centers. We conducted a prospective observational single-center cohort study in May 2013 to assess the presentation, management and outcomes of adult and pediatric patients admitted with sepsis to a community hospital in rural Uganda.
We consecutively screened all patients admitted to medical wards who met sepsis criteria. We evaluated eligible patients within 24 hours of presentation and 24-48 hours after admission, and followed them until hospital discharge. In addition to chart review, mental status evaluation, peripheral capillary oxygen saturation, and point-of-care venous whole blood lactate and glucose testing were performed.
Of 56 eligible patients, we analyzed data on 51 (20 adults and 31 children). Median age was 8 years (IQR 2-23 years). Sepsis accounted for a quarter of all adult and pediatric medical ward admissions during the study period. HIV prevalence among adults was 30%. On enrollment, over half of patients had elevated point-of-care whole blood lactate, few were hypoglycemic or had altered mental status, and one third were hypoxic. Over 80% of patients received at least one antibiotic, all severely hypoxic patients received supplemental oxygen, and half of patients with elevated lactate received fluid resuscitation. The most common causes of sepsis were malaria and pneumonia. In-hospital mortality was 3.9%.
This study highlights the importance of sepsis among adult and pediatric patients admitted to a rural Ugandan hospital and underscores the need for continued research on sepsis in low resource settings.