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Research Note: Sequential Organ Failure Assessment Scoring in Septic Dogs

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Sepsis (ie, systemic inflammatory response syndrome with an infectious nidus) is associated with high morbidity and mortality. Rapid diagnosis may enable early intervention and improved outcome; however, diagnosis is difficult because there is currently no single reliable test, clinical finding, or scoring system for sepsis. The quick sequential-related organ failure assessment (qSOFA) scoring system was developed to have greater specificity than systemic inflammatory response syndrome criteria for predicting mortality and recognizing organ dysfunction in humans with suspected sepsis. 

This study used different respiratory rate cutoffs to evaluate the prognostic usefulness of qSOFA scoring in dogs with severe sepsis and septic shock, as well as the clinical value of qSOFA scoring for predicting severe sepsis and septic shock in critically ill dogs presented to an emergency clinic. qSOFA scoring at all respiratory rate cutoffs revealed poor mortality prediction and low sensitivity for detection of severe sepsis and septic shock and should thus not be used alone when screening for sepsis.

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For global readers, a calculator to convert laboratory values, dosages, and other measurements to SI units can be found here.

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