Most sepsis patients have a rapid heart rate and racing pulse of more than 90 beats a minute. The overactive immune response causes a demand on the heart to pump blood more quickly. The fast pumping action produces two severe anomalies. First, blood flow might not reach all parts of the body. Second, the accelerated rate of pumping pressurizes the pulmonary system for a quick supply of oxygen-rich blood. This may lead to severe breathlessness in advanced stages of sepsis.
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