Claire to tackle Dundee Kiltwalk two years after sepsis almost killed her

Claire Rouse is taking part to highlight the dangers of sepsis.
Claire Rouse is taking part to highlight the dangers of sepsis.

Superfit Claire Cuthill is taking part in this year’s Kiltwalk to raise awareness of sepsis – after nearly dying from the illness.

The 27-year-old veterinary assistant was struck by the killer bug two years ago and was told if she’d fallen asleep at the time she might not have survived the night.

Now Claire, from Kirriemuir, is determined to highlight the plight of other sufferers to ensure they recognise the signs before it’s too late.

She said: “I had a urine infection that moved into my kidneys, but in the end up I had to get an ambulance to Ninewells Hospital.

“I was lucky. First of all my mum was on the NHS 24 hour phone line and telling them about my symptoms like sweating, being sick and feeling really disorientated. I knew I wasn’t right and while we were waiting a nurse phoned back to say that they were sending an ambulance. She had been quick-thinking and recognised the sespis signs.

“I had never been seriously ill in my life and ended up with sepsis.

“The feeling of tiredness and just wanting to sleep was over-powering, but a nurse told me later that if I had gone to sleep I might never have woken up. Now I have fought back and feel fitter and stronger than I ever have, although that’s probably not the case, but I am so much more determined.

“I did the kiltwalk in Aberdeen last year along with my husband, Ed, but afterwards he said ‘never again’ because I walk too quickly for him.”

Claire told how she has a fitness regime including running, gym work and walking her springer spaniel Oakley.

She added: “I keep fit and now it is all about highlighting the awareness of sepsis and warning others to watch out. I do a lot of social media work and post stuff and share a lot of sepsis warnings on Facebook.

“It really is a big danger now and there are lots of campaigns on the go to warn of the danger of it.

“I was lucky and it was only afterwards I heard so many stories about people who don’t make it, or even lose limbs through this.

“It is a terrible illness and you cannot take a chance with it.

“You have to get to hospital as soon as you can as it spreads quickly.”