In February, we donated the funds raised during our casual Fridays to Layla’s Dream. We raised $130, and the company matched it for a donation of $260.
Layla’s Dream honors the memory of Layla Charette, who died of septicemia, or sepsis, last year. This dangerous condition occurs when bacteria from an infection enters the body and spreads throughout, which can lead to a cascade of problems, including organ failure.
Approximately 80 percent of all sepsis cases start outside of hospitals. It can affect anyone, but it is more common in very young or very old people and more dangerous for them, too. Fortunately, most people can recover from mild sepsis when treated with antibiotics quickly. However, the mortality rate for septic shock is nearly 50 percent.
About 75,000 children develop sepsis in the U.S. annually, and more children die from sepsis than pediatric cancers. Luckily, sepsis is often preventable by following a few basic precautions.
Precautions against sepsis include vaccinations against infections such as the flu, practicing proper hygiene such as handwashing, and caring for wounds, no matter how small. Clean all cuts and scrapes with soap and water to remove bacteria.
Understanding the symptoms of sepsis is equally important. Anyone who suspects they or a loved one has sepsis should act quickly so their doctor can order tests to determine whether an infection exists and its source. A quick response ensures a proper antibiotic regimen and other medical care before sepsis shock can occur.
Regrettably, many initial sepsis symptoms are often dismissed as a viral infection such as the flu. Visit a doctor quickly if the person has two or more symptoms including a fever above 101ºF or a below normal body temperature, an increased heart rate, rapid breathing, and the signs of possible infection.
If sepsis is severe it can also cause discolored skin patches, repetitive vomiting, appetite loss, reduced urination, incoherence, inhibited breathing and heart functions, dizziness, faintness, and cause a loss of consciousness due to very low blood pressure. Layla’s parents rushed her to Hasbro Children’s Hospital because she was incoherent, but doctors could not save her.
Hasbro Children’s Hospital is part of a children’s hospital collaborative dedicated to decreasing sepsis deaths. These hospitals are trying to pinpoint ways to identify sepsis earlier and protocols to prevent it from happening.
Layla’s Dream, created by Layla’s parents who are valued clients of Loiselle Insurance, focuses on the child by providing toys such as dolls, stuffed animals, books, and playdough or any other activity to help brighten their days. Of course, they want to increase awareness so other parents do not have to repeat their devastating experience.
If you would like to donate to this worthwhile cause, you can do so here. Every donation reflects Layla’s kind, giving disposition and helps other children who need support too. You can also track ongoing efforts on Layla’s Dream Facebook page.