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A delay in diagnosis of sepsis and appropriate treatment increases subsequent mortality. An association with the degree of bandemia, or the presence of immature neutrophils in the white blood cell count, has not been explored in septic patients presenting to the emergency department (ED). We hypothesized that the presenting band levels would be higher in septic patients who die in hospital compared with survivors.This study reviewed charts of ED patients presenting with sepsis to a single urban, academic, tertiary care ED with an annual census of 80 000 visits. Patients were included if they had bandemia assessed and were eligible for early goal-directed therapy. Reviewers blinded to the study purpose abstracted data using predetermined definitions. The band level was compared between patients who died and those who survived to discharge using the Mann-Whitney U test. Logistic regression was used to estimate the effect of bandemia levels on the odds of death.Ninety-six patients meeting inclusion criteria were enrolled; 2 were excluded with incomplete data. Mean age was 59 years, 53% were white, and 51% were male. Thirty-two patients (34%) died during admission. The median band levels in patients who died was 17% (range, 0%-67%); and in patients surviving to discharge, the median band level was 9% (range, 0%-77%) (difference in medians, 8%; CI95, -27.04 to 11.04; P = .222).The band level on presentation was not found to be associated with inpatient mortality in ED patients with sepsis who are eligible for early goal-directed therapy.