ZRS contributor, Annie Herndon, argues that once infected with the zombie sickness, your own immune system may act as the final nail in your coffin.  She points to septic shock as the likely reason humans die so quickly after a zombie bite.

Sepsis is a little known condition in which the body is fighting a severe infection that has spread via the bloodstream.  The immune system goes into overdrive, overwhelming normal processes in the blood, and leading to blood clots and organ failure.

“The zombie bite doesn’t need to be fatal, because your own immune system will react so violently to the invading sickness that you essentially kill yourself.”

Patients that become septic must be quickly seen by medical professionals or risk falling into a state of shock.  If left untreated, death can occur within a matter of hours.

Over 200,000 people die of sepsis each year in the United States alone, and the symptoms so closely mirror those seen in depictions of the aftermath of a zombie bite that Herndon’s hypothesis seems at very least a strong contender.


  1. So that could mean that people with immunodeficiency (for example leukemia, AIDS or a primary immunodeficiency disorder) would survive longer if infected by a zombie?

  2. Do you think that’s her sex face?

  3. Sepsis. I never really thought about it, but I guess any sort of toxic shock would do the trick. So it would not be to far fetched to say that some people(very few indeed) may be able to sort of “shrug off” a bite until they die of something else? That would really cause problems when someone dies and you have no idea they were bitten 2 months ago and all of a sudden your “safe house” has a zombie in it!

  4. Mmm…. Sepsis….

    • So, having people taking first aid classes may help reduce the chance of a bitten person turning or at least get the infected spotted earlier?

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