On October 15th, 2018, American business magnate, philanthropist, and investor Paul Allen passed away at the age of 65 at the Swedish Medical Center in Seattle. His cause of death has now been revealed as septic shock due to Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.
Sepsis can affect anyone at any time but, for people with risk factors it is a constant threat. Conditions like cancer are predisposed to sepsis, not only because cancer can weaken the body’s immune system but also because of the need for frequent invasive procedures and the effects of chemotherapy.
Sepsis and septic shock remain one of the most underestimated health risks worldwide, affecting 27 to 32 million people annually, of which 7 to 9 million die.
Dr. Ron Daniels, CEO of the Global Sepsis Alliance, said: “It is still not fundamentally understood that sepsis is a medical emergency and must be treated like a heart attack or a stroke.”
Prof. Konrad Reinhart, Chair of the GSA, said: “Lack of awareness and knowledge about sepsis kills and makes sepsis the number one preventable cause of death worldwide, because it delays people from seeking help as they do not recognize the early symptoms. Likewise, it is poorly recognized that many sepsis deaths can be prevented by vaccination against meningitis, pneumonia, and seasonal flu, which are among the main culprits.”