“Bionic MP” Raises Sepsis Awareness.

On 27 September 2023 MP Craig Mackinlay felt unwell; carried out a COVID-19 test which was negative; and then went to sleep early. During the night he was unwell but didn’t think much more of it. His wife was worried and checked his blood pressure and temperature. She noticed his arms were cold and she didn’t feel a pulse in his wrists.

Craig was then taken to hospital and it was determined that he had gone into septic shock. He was put into an induced coma which lasted 16 days, and when he awoke he discovered that his legs and arms had turned completely black. The decision was made that he would need to have both of his lower arms and lower legs removed, and on 1 December he received a quadruple amputation.

He was given prosthetic arms and legs and had a long journey of recovery, aiming to be the first “bionic MP”. He made his return to Parliament on 22 May 2024 receiving a rare standing ovation in the House of Commons, before retiring two days later owing to his ongoing rehabilitation and recovery.

The inspirational story of MP Craig Mackinlay reminds us to be aware of the risks and dangers of sepsis, and how devastating the consequences of sepsis can be.

Sepsis occurs when the body’s immune system attacks the body’s own tissues and organs in response to an infection.

It is advised that if you develop any of the six SEPSIS signs below to seek urgent medical help:

Slurred speech or confusion
Extreme shivering or muscle pain
Passing no urine (in a day)
Severe breathlessness
It feels like you’re going to die
Skin mottled or discoloured

If not treated quickly, sepsis can lead to multi organ failure and death. It is the second biggest killer in the UK after cardiovascular disease, killing around 36,800 patients a year. However, if diagnosed and treated early, over 75% of patients will recover. It is therefore crucial that the signs of sepsis are recognised and diagnosed by a medical professional swiftly, and that treatment is started immediately thereafter. Treatment can consist of fluids, IV antibiotics, steroids and other pharmacological treatments and if started promptly, enable the patient to have the best chance of survival and recovery.

Sepsis can be difficult to recognise and diagnose, and sometimes the early signs of sepsis can be misdiagnosed as other less worrying medical conditions. Within recent years, there has been a drive by the NHS to train and educate its’ staff to “Think Sepsis” to ensure that the early warning signs are spotted quickly.

You can find further information regarding sepsis via the Sepsis Trust website: https://sepsistrust.org/ or the World Sepsis Day website: https://www.worldsepsisday.org/

If you or your family have been affected by sepsis, please contact us in confidence to discuss whether or not you may have a claim for compensation.

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