HOME / DIET & NUTRITION /The Deadly Condition You Never Knew ExistedSarah Kaye Santos MORE ARTICLESNovember 23, 2016FACEBOOKTWITTERLINKEDINSTUMBLEUPONREDDITWhen most of us think of deadly health problems, heart disease and cancer are the first things that come to mind. After all, these diseases are the leading causes of death in the U.S., according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Not every health issue is a disease, though, at least not exactly. In some cases, an illness can lead to a life-threatening complication, and that’s the case with sepsis.Though you might not have heard of it before, sepsis is a lot more common than you think. In fact, the National Institute of General Medical Science says more than a million Americans are affected each year, and 28% to 50% of those people end up dying from the condition. So what exactly is this complication and what should you know about it? Read on to find out.What is sepsis?A diagram showing different organs in the human body | iStock.com/goa_noviSepsis is a complication that can develop when the immune system overwhelmingly responds to infection, according to the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. When this happens, the huge influx of immune chemicals leads to blood clots and leaky blood vessels. As a result, your organs don’t get the oxygen or nutrients that they need to function properly. In severe cases, this leads to septic shock, which may cause multiple organs to fail and even death.