evidence and practice
Screening for sepsis: SIRS or qSOFA? A literature review
Benjamin Feist Senior staff nurse, emergency department, London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust, London, England
In 2016, definitions of sepsis and septic shock were updated to focus on organ dysfunction rather than systemic inflammatory response as the identifying trait.
This article aims to compare and evaluate the effectiveness of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) and quick Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (qSOFA) in detecting sepsis in emergency department (ED) patients. A systematic search of the literature was undertaken using four databases. A total of 307 articles was identified. After the selection process, 13 articles met the inclusion criteria for the review.
Five themes emerged from the meta-analysis: SIRS; qSOFA; timeliness and simplicity; sensitivity versus specificity; and adding lacate. SIRS offered users greater sensitivity when assessing for sepsis. However, qSOFA is a simple bedside tool with greater specificity, which does not require any blood test results. The author created a new qSOFA screening tool, which incorporated the use of point-of-care serum lactate measurement. He found that qSOFA outperforms SIRS as an ED sepsis screening tool with its strengths of efficacy, efficiency and ease. It was also found to differentiate better between uncomplicated infection and sepsis, which can commonly cause trigger fatigue in EDs.
Emergency Nurse. doi: 10.7748/en.2019.e1939Peer review
This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and has been checked for plagiarism using automated softwareCorrespondence
Feist B (2019) Screening for sepsis: SIRS or qSOFA? A literature review. Emergency Nurse. doi: 10.7748/en.2019.e1939
Published online: 15 October 2019