S.12/E.13

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Septic Shock and Amputation

Four years ago, at the age of 52, Katy Grainger’s life was turned upside down when she nearly died from septic shock because of a small, infected cut on her thumb. Because of sepsis, she now lives as a double below-knee amputee who also lost the tips of most of her fingers.  When she became ill, she was unaware of the symptoms of sepsis, so she now shares her story in order to prevent others from experiencing what she went through. One in five deaths worldwide are caused by sepsis, yet few people have heard of it and even fewer can identify the signs and symptoms.

Katy is on the Board of Directors of Sepsis Alliance, the leading advocate for sepsis in the United States, and volunteers with the Amputee Coalition supporting new amputees.  She advocates for policy that supports issues impacting sepsis and people with limb loss. She was described in a recent magazine article as “one of the nation’s leading advocates for sepsis awareness”. Katy has turned the worst thing that has ever happened in her life into an opportunity to save lives and limbs. Hundreds of thousands of people have seen her speak or have read articles about her sepsis experience. She has impacted medical policy in the United States by speaking to law makers in Washington DC. 

She has begun modeling and acting in order to represent disability in print and film.  She has written many short stories about her experience and performed them as monologues throughout the pandemic in zoom shows.  She is planning to publish a book about her experience and the opportunities that have arisen out of her tragedy.