The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Laboratory Methods to Aid in the Detection of Sepsis. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

Learn more about Laboratory Methods to Aid in the Detection of Sepsis (online CE course) »
How to Subscribe
MLS & MLT Comprehensive CE Package
Includes 101 CE courses, most popular
$95 Add to cart
Pick Your Courses
Up to 8 CE hours
$50 Add to cart
Individual course$20 Add to cart

Additional Testing for Diagnosis of Sepsis/Severe Sepsis

Blood cultures are critical for the diagnosis of sepsis/severe sepsis. Blood cultures should be drawn prior to the administration of antibiotics.
Cultures take time to grow. This time can mean the difference between life and death for a patient. Although sepsis/severe sepsis cannot be definitively diagnosed until it is determined that there is a blood or tissue infection, the diagnosis may still be made if other criteria strongly suggests its presence. If the patient exhibits altered mental status and/or edema in addition to the SIRS criteria, or if one or more of the laboratory test results shown below are obtained along with evidence from the clinical assessment, the physician may choose to start antibiotic treatment before the results of the cultures are available:
  • Elevated C-reactive protein (CRP)
  • Elevated procalcitonin
  • Elevated lactic acid (lactate)