Joshua Bassett's Near-Fatal Health Scare Explained

The day wasn't supposed to unfold that way. For Joshua Bassett, the start of 2021 wasn't something he'd expected. The "High School Musical: The Musical: The Series" actor released his single "Lie Lie Lie" on January 14, but the "unimaginable pain" he felt wasn't butterflies in his stomach. Bassett initially thought that it was "food poisoning or whatever," but then the pain only became unbearable (via GQ).

"It got worse, it got worse, it got worse, it got worse," he said of the day he was hospitalized when speaking to GQ. "[The doctors] told me that I had a 30% chance of survival," he continued. "They told me that if I had not checked into the hospital within 12 hours, I would have been found [dead] in my apartment." The internet echoed with speculations around the artist's health, but he was too overwhelmed with little energy to "be able to focus on anything but staying alive." However, Bassett has since shed some light on what happened. Here's a look into his near-fatal health scare.

Joshua Bassett went into septic shock and heart failure

Joshua Bassett is still unsure what may have led to the January health complications that had him hospitalized, but he does feel that the pressure he was under had something to do with it. "I'm sure stress had a part in it," he told GQ. However, the pain he was experiencing was due to both heart failure and septic shock.

Sepsis causes dramatic changes in the body and results from an infection. It occurs "when the infection reaches the bloodstream and causes inflammation in the body," according to Healthline. It can be life-threatening if not treated promptly.

Sepsis is broken down into three stages. The first stage sees the infection spreading to the bloodstream and causing inflammation. The infection then starts affecting vital organs such as the heart, brain, and kidney. In the third stage, the person suffering from the infection gets a septic shock — a drop in blood pressure, potentially leading to heart failure, stroke, organ failure, and even death in certain cases (via Healthline).

Symptoms of septic shock

Sepsis is commonly caused by a viral, fungal, or bacterial infection. The infection originates from digestive system infections, lung infections such as pneumonia, infections in the reproductive system, and urinary tract infection (via Healthline). Healthline also revealed that prior illness or age factors can pose a more significant threat for septic shock. Sepsis is more common in newborns, older adults, and pregnant women, along with people who have a weakened immune system due to HIV, rheumatic conditions such as psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis, and inflammatory bowel diseases. Some cancer treatments could also result in sepsis.

According to the Mayo Clinic, infections in the brain or spinal cord can also lead to the condition. Sepsis is also known to be caused by bacteria entering the skin through open wounds. Although Joshua Bassett didn't elaborate on what may have caused him to go into septic shock and heart failure, he did detail how painful it was when speaking to GQ.

Sepsis takes a definite toll on the body. The symptoms are intense and require immediate medical attention. Although we don't know all of Joshua Bassett's symptoms, some symptoms of septic shock include fever, and increased heart rate, hypothermia (low body temperature), and raping breading (via Healthline). Other symptoms that characterize septic shock include dizziness, confusion, trouble breathing, cyanosis (bluing of the skin and mucous membranes), and decreased urine output.

Joshua Bassett's health has since improved

After going through emergency surgery resulting from septic shock, Joshua Bassett revealed a few days later in January that he was "feeling much better" (via E!). While Bassett hasn't detailed all of his treatments, the Mayo Clinic explained that antibiotics are often used to fight the infection-causing bacteria. Doctors also use intravenous fluids and vasopressors medications that constrict blood vessels and increase the body's blood pressure.

The star posted an Instagram Story in January, revealing that he was under "very excellent care" (via E!). Bassett also thanked his fans and followers for their support. "Really grateful to have so much support in this time and I promise there is much more to come. Looking forward to getting back to work," he wrote in his post. "Thank you all again for your kindness!!!" He is no doubt thankful that his near-death experience is now behind him.