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Emergency ward doctors get treatment wrong for septic shock

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Emergency ward doctors have been getting it wrong when they’ve been treating a case of life-threatening septic shock. Septic shock is a complication of an infectious disease, and it kills 60 per cent of sufferers. Traditionally, it’s been treated with intensive insulin therapy to counter raised blood glucose levels – but a new study has discovered that the therapy doesn’t help the patient, and it may even increase the risk of death. In a study of 509 adults with septic shock, who were treated at an intensive care unit in France, 117 of the 255 patients given intensive insulin therapy died, compared with 109 of 254 patients who instead had conventional insulin therapy. (Source: Journal of the American Medical Association, 2010; 303: 341-8).

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