Which of the following features is highly characteristic of a septic shock? 1) Metabolic alkalosis 2) Hypermetabolism 3) High peripheral vascular resistance 4) Inhibition of the systemic nervous...

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Septic shock is a condition whereby the body has a serious bacterial infection.  The infection can be localized or it can be systemic (spread around the body).  If left unchecked, it can lead to organ failure and eventually death.  Let's look at each of the possible answers and see which one fits. 

Metabolic alkalosis means that the blood pH increases (becomes less acidic and more basic) due to increased carbonate levels.  This is not a part of septic shock.  Hypermetabolism is the metabolic system rapidly increasing.  This can be characterized by an increased heart rate, body temperature, and breaths per minute.  All of these are characterisitic of septic shock.  High peripheral vascular resistance means the pressure that must be overcome to push blood through the blood vessels.  Septic shock is actually characterized by hypotension, meaning very low blood pressure, so this is the opposite.  Finally, I suspect you mean sympathetic nervous system instead of systemic.  The sympathetic nervous system is a part of the autonomic nervous system, or what controls involuntary nerve actions.  Septic shock really plays no part here.

So the answer is 2) hypermetabolism.

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