Nurse who ‘just kept going’ saw her fingernails and lips turn blue from sepsis

A nurse who 'just kept going' during a hectic week at work saw her fingernails and lips turn blue from sepsis.

Nicola Ore, 50, from Liverpool, was rushed to A&E after her colleagues spotted the discolouration on June 1 last year.

She started to fell unwell on May 30 after working long hours during the week, however she put it down to being tired, the Liverpool Echo reports.

The Clinical Lead for Mersey Care NHS Trust took some painkillers and got an early night – but she failed to recover over the next two days.

It wasn't until around 9am on June 1, that her colleagues noticed something was seriously wrong.

She was shivering and feeling confused when her fellow workers decided she needed to go to A&E at Aintree Hospital.

It was there that Nicola was diagnosed with sepsis – a life threatening condition which occurs when the immune system goes into overdrive as it tries to fight an infection.

Although working as a nurse means that Nicola knows how to spot the signs of sepsis in other people, she said "I didn't recognise the signs in myself."

Nicola told the ECHO : "It was the most frightening experience of my life.

"It had been a busy week and I was going on leave in two weeks' time so I was trying to get everything done before it.

"I just kept going because that's what nurses do.

"I felt really unwell on the Friday morning and even though it was really hot outside I was shivering.

"My colleagues were really concerned about me and at that point I was going to drive myself home and go to my GP.

"But I was so ill I didn't have the capacity to, so my colleagues persuaded me to go down to Aintree Hospital with them."

It was at Aintree Hospital that Nicola was told she had sepsis and after she was given antibiotics and pain relief in A&E she was taken to a trauma unit.

After being moved onto a ward, she stayed in hospital for three days until she came home on June 4.

Nicola who has three children with her husband Mike, said it was a "really traumatic" time for her family, who had never been to an A&E ward before.

She added: "Everyone said I was extremely lucky. People die from sepsis and as a trust we are seeing more cases of sepsis coming through than we ever have done, from all areas.

"The care I received at Aintree was outstanding, they recognised the correct intervention and I believe that's why I am still here today.

"I think as nurses we just carry on and we're not very good at looking after ourselves.

"We come in and we just want to do the best every day, it's really been a wake up call for me."

It took Nicola nearly a year to recover fully from the illness, which affected her short term memory including her ability to recall names, numbers and dates.

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