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Sepsis Healthcare Data Viz Using Tableau

In the health care industry, data related decisions becoming increasingly important. With the growing amount of patients data, health care providers must harness technology tools to analyze data and make decisions. One such user friendly and at same time powerful tool is Tableau that enables healthcare providers to gain deeper insights and understand complex datasets.

In this article, we will explore the benefits and challenges of using Tableau in healthcare data analysis using sepsis dataset.

Tableau project Steps to be performed for successful implementation :

Data Collection:  Gathering the relevant data related to sepsis. Gathering the information on each biomarkers, including patients details, demographical information’s , clinical and laboratory ranges, treatment protocols and outcomes.

Data Preparation:  Basically Organizing the data, like identifying the missing values in the dataset and decide how to handle them like replacing missing values with estimated values or deletion of rows or columns or flagging or hiding.  Aggregating the data if necessary at level of granularity. When working with multiple datasets sometimes we merge or join them based on common identities. These are all involved in Data preparation.

Connect Data to Tableau:  Import the prepared dataset into Tableau Desktop. Tableau supports various data sources like CSV, Excel, databases and other cloud platforms.

Explore Data:  Use Tableau interface to explore the dataset visually.  Dragging and dropping the fields to create different basic and advanced visualizations is so much fun to learn.

Create Dashboards:  Design interactive dashboards that provide overview of sepsis related trends such as Key performance Indicators, Ranges, Vital signs, length of stays, Multiple Organ Dysfunction,  Morbidity , Mortality predictions and many more .

Apply filters and parameters:  Implementing this features helps users and audience to interact with data dynamically.

Share Insights:  Tableau offers various sharing options such as Tableau Public, Tableau Desktop, Tableau server  and also exporting to other formats like PDF, Image and also Download options.

Collaborate:  Collaboration among team members will help to focus on gaining maximum insights with the dataset. Knowledge sharing , peer reviews, feedbacks , Documentations play major role in deriving meaningful insights and developing creative dashboards and storyboards.

What is SEPSIS ?

Also called: septicemia

A life threatening complication to an infection.

Anyone can get an infection and almost any infection including COVID-19 can lead to sepsis.

sepsis happens when an infection already have chain trigger of chain of reaction throughout the body. Most cases of sepsis start before a patient goes to hospital. Infections that lead to sepsis most often start in the lung, urinary tract, skin or gastrointestinal tract.  Without timely treatment sepsis can rapidly lead to tissue damage, organ failure and death.

Understanding the importance of Biomarkers


A biomarker describes a measurable indicator of a patient’s clinical condition that can be measured accurately.  Biomarkers offer utility for diagnosis, prognosis, early disease recognition, risk stratification, appropriate treatment (theranostics) and trial enrichment for patients with sepsis or suspected sepsis.

I want to discuss on one of the given biomarkers Glucose in this article from the sepsis dataset.

Glucose metabolism is badly affected due to dysregulated inflammatory response.

Sepsis is a severe condition leading to multi organ dysfunction(MOD) and high risk of mortality.

Sepsis patients can experience Hyper glycemia.  Hyper glycemia which is high blood sugar levels can make the condition worsen and also make the recovery  difficult.  Sepsis  can cause blood sugar levels to fluctuate, going high as well as low even when you don’t have diabetes .

And Hypo glycemia is a condition which is low blood sugar levels >70milligrams per deciliter can also lead to high mortality risk.

How low blood sugar levels can be risky ?

Yes , Treatments for Hyperglycemia can sometimes leads to dangerously low blood sugar levels which means healthcare professionals often use insulin to manage sepsis related high blood sugar levels where body to absorbs glucose too efficiently.

In patients with sepsis serum glucose levels may vary depending upon various factors. Such as ,

Euglycemia:  It may maintain normal glucose levels in some patients with sepsis especially at early stages  or without diabetic conditions. But it is still important to note the and maintain Euglycemic ranges . Their serum glucose levels normally within the range of 70-140 Milligrams/Deciliter.

Mild Hyperglycemic patients in ICU are who considered with blood glucose levels above the normal range but below the expected severity range. That is in between 140-200 mg/DL.  That is called mid range glucose levels between hyper and hypo glycemia. This may indicates, a dynamic metabolic response to infection and stress.

Hyperglycemia can be occurred due to the release of stress hormones like cortisol and catecholamines which promotes gluconeogenesis and glycogenolysis, leading to elevated blood glucose levels.

Hyper glycemia also associated with poor outcomes and increases mortality risks because their range is too high in between 200-900Mg/DL.

Hypo glycemia:  sepsis patients may experience malnutrition and prolonged fasting, which can deplete glycogen  and impair gluconeogenesis , increasing the risk of Hypo glycemia. (>70Mg/DL)


From the above Tableau Dashboard we can observe the distributions of glucose ranges in sepsis patients and all other possible analysis with the gender breakdowns and the respective counts for each category.

The table chart is perfectly showing the Average hours spent in ICU by Age range by glucose category along with sepsis count of patients.

This Image is the other view showing the distribution of gender and also Age ranges by totals.

The liver play crucial role in glucose homeostasis regulating both glucose production (gluconeogenesis) and storage (glycogenolysis). In sepsis, hepatic glucose production is dysregulated leading to increases production and storage which contribute to Hyperglycemia .

The release of inflammatory cytokines leads to organ damage. 

The Adaptive Immune suppression makes cell death and exhaustion.

Appropriate Intensive Insulin Therapy (IIT) is immediately required  with Early Goal Directed Therapy (EGDT) is crucial in preventing organ damage.

The integration of Tableau in sepsis analysis offers a transformative approach in understanding the relationship between complications of Abnormal glucose ranges and how severely affecting the liver or other organs. Mainly predicting with ICU stay hours is a detail insight from the dataset.

So, In real life scenarios these type of visualizations help medical clinicians in their daily operations addressing patient needs and also gain deeper insights in identifying patterns, trends and outliers in research and analysis .

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