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U.S. "Stroke Belt" May Also Be "Sepsis Belt", University of Alabama at Birmingham Study  
8/5/2011 7:30:03 AM

People living in a region of the southeastern United States known as the "Stroke Belt" are known to have significantly higher rates of stroke deaths than the rest of the country. New research reveals these residents are also at greater risk for sepsis, a severe illness in which bacteria overwhelms the bloodstream. "In 2010, we examined death rates from sepsis across the United States," said Dr. Henry Wang, associate professor and vice chair for research in the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) department of emergency medicine. "Laying it out on a map, we saw that the states with highest sepsis mortality formed a cluster in the Southeast United States, closely mirroring the appearance of the Stroke Belt."