TEAM BREEN NEEDS YOUR HELP!
Before Tuesday, December 27th, Kevin Breen was an active, hard working 44 year old husband and father who loved to spend time with his family on the lake water skiing and surfing. That night he went to Urgent Care with flu-like symptoms & stomach pain. He was sent home with some medication and told to go to the ER if he didn't feel better. Wednesday morning he went to the ER where he was diagnosed with acute mild pancreatitis and admitted to the hospital.
That night, he just kept getting worse and no pain medication would help. Thursday morning the doctors performed an exploratory surgery, because Kevin was showing signs of a ruptured ulcer. When they opened him up, they found 1.5 liters of infected puss, which later was found to be a streptococcal(strep)infection. It was never found in his blood, so the source is still unknown.
According to the doctors, Kevin is the second documented male in the world for this to happen to. This infection caused him to go into severe septic shock and transfer to the intensive care unit (ICU) where he was placed on a ventilator. While there, we almost lost Kevin, but he beat the odds and fought for his life. Unfortunately, to keep him alive, they had to give him high doses of medication to keep his blood pressure up, but they also stopped the blood flow in his extremities and led to necrosis(tissue death) of his hands and feet. His kidneys shut down and he was placed on continuous dialysis to filter his blood.
While in the ICU, the entire staff worked endlessly to help Kevin and offered continuous prayers for his recovery. No doubt their prayers and those from friends and family are what got Kevin through.
Once out of the hospital, Kevin was transferred to an acute rehab hospital where the staff worked hard to help him gain strength and independence. They even made arrangements for him to go to the Grand Rapids Boat Show (boating is Kevin's passion). While at the rehab facility, he was finally able to stop dialysis, praise God!
After about a month at rehab, Kevin was discharged home to start his next journey. What lies ahead for Kevin is at least 4 surgeries: complete amputation of his left hand, amputation of multiple fingers on the right, and partial amputation of both his feet.
Kevin has been very motivated through this journey and has been an inspiration to myself, his friends, family and the medical/rehab staff that took care of him. On behalf of Kevin and his family, I created this gofundme page to help raise money for their growing medical expenses- God willing!
Let's help Kevin and his family so he can achieve his goal of getting back on his boat, and back on his skis!
In honor of Kevin and his family, myself and a growing group of people are taking part in the Michigan Tough Mudder race in Oxford, Michigan on Saturday, June 3th 2017.
Our goal is to raise $150,000 by raceday!
Anyone can join our team to support Kevin, just sign-up at toughmudder.com and join our group: Team Breen
Kevin and his wife Julie have shown great strength, humility, perseverance, and faith in God throughout his ongoing journey. Please consider making a donation to show your support!
" I can do all this through him who gives me strength."
Kevin, Julie, Lilly(14), Bella(4), and Blake(3) are forever grateful for all of their family and friends who helped them get through this time. The amount of prayers lifted up, no doubt kept Kevin alive. They have a very long journey ahead, with many unknowns. Please continue to pray and they will continue to be thankful for all that they still have. Life will forever be different, but different doesn't have to be bad.
These are pictures from the amputation of the fingers on the right hand. These are very painful for Kevin, praying this pain decreases soon.
Thank you to all that have donated. God is good.
We are so thankful for all the prayers. Please continue to pray, as Kevin is in a lot of pain and getting around is getting harder with each surgery. We are hoping for a relaxing weekend with friends to prepare for the next surgery on Tuesday.
"Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus." -1 Thessalonians 5:18:
Kevin's story gave me chills. My 27 year old daughter went through a very similar thing in January. She went to the ER for strep on January 2, was placed in ICU on the 3rd and ended up going septic shock. Her body went into congestive heart failure and like Kevin suffered damage to her extremites. She underwent partial ampuatation on Jan 18, losing parts of 6 fingers and 2 toes. Our hearts go out to you and your family during Kevin's recovery. Feel free to reach out to us. Shelby is more than happy to share her story anf offer support.
Dear Breen Family, My name is Henry Barnaby and I just went through the same loss as yourself, both hands and all of my toes. I want to let you know you are not alone and there are many support avenues to help you get through this. One of the best is Skills for life: Bilateral Upper Limb Workshop on Facebook. Feel free to PM me if you have any questions Sincerely, Henry Barnaby III
Be sure to check out Amputee Coalition of America, they have a lot of great resources for you!! And when you're healed up some, check out some amputee camps like Camp No Limits! They are lots of fun and learning!!! My prayers are with you!! I have seen many rise above in similar situations, you've got this!!
My prayers are with you and your family. My 20 year old daughter became septic in 2012 with an unknown bacteria. After 2 weeks in a coma and the vasopressors to keep her alive, she pulled though. Three months in the hospital too many surgeries to count she made it! She lost both of her hands to the wrists and both of her legs six inches below the knees. Life has been hard for her but she had an amazing team of doctors and prosthetists and gets along fairly well today. She's alive and with us and that is more precious than gold. You have an amazing spirit about you and I have no doubt you will do great. If you care to check her story out it's under Team Taylor or Team Taylor Church from Escondido, CA or San Diego, CA. The news interviews are on YouTube. Feel free to reach out to her, she loves to help others like herself and sometimes she has found it's easier to talk to people that are similar to her. Sending many prayers for you and your family for continued healing and course with your other surgeries. May God continue to bless you. Remember, we walk by faith, not by sight.
Praying for a recovery. My husband spent two months in the hospital in Nov. and Dec. with a very similar situation. We almost lost him. Someone needs to figure out why this is happening because it can't be all that rare considering the other comments I read here.
Our thoughts and prayers with you. I am wondering if Kevin was taking any of the stomach acid suppressing proton pump inhibitor drugs which make the stomach less acidic, and so more hospitable to bacteria. Our child took two of these drugs for reflux and then got small bowel overgrowth which she has battled for 10 years, leading to ulcerative colitis. If you are on these pills please be careful!
I also had chills as I read this. My husband Michael went thru almost the EXACT same thing September 1, 2016 also from strep. He went into Septic Shock and total organ failure and was on life support for 3 weeks . They had no idea it was strep until they intubated him and they couldn't get the breathing tube in because of all the puss. Later his blood results also came back positive for strep. The worst day of my life was September 2nd when they told me to bring my 5 kids into say goodbye to him. He beat the odds and survived but was in and out of the ICU/hospital/rehab centers for 2 months. They were also very concerned about tissue damage to his extremities. He developed a pressure wound 13x11x9 on his back that went almost to his bone. We had amazing doctors who tried several experimental treatments which I honestly believed stopped the bacteria from spreading which I would be happy to share. I agree with many of the comments here that someone needs to figure out what is going on with this strain of strep. My husband had no signs of strep....not even a fever! His symptoms were a headache and pain in his back near where he developed the pressure wound. Consequently, my entire family who we had vacationed with a week prior went and got tested for strep and 8 of them also tested positive with no symptoms. They also told us how rare this is...but I agree with the comments below....that does not seem to be the case. It feel like the CDC or other Health organization needs to get involved here. Michael's wound doctor sent a tissue culture to a lab in Atlanta where they developed a special antibiotic ointment just for him and since we have been using it the regeneration of tissue has been AMAZING and his wound is healing. Maybe this can help Kevin? We will continue to keep Kevin and your family in our thoughts and prayers. As I tell myself everyday....the road ahead is long but it is much better then what the alternative was. Please feel free to reach out to me as well.
Kevin, I went through the same thing. I had strep, became septic, 104.9 fever and then septic shock. I actually was in a coma forc11 days, with heart failure, kidney failure, liver failure and respiratory failure. I was on the vent for 11 days also. I had both hands and feet turn neurotic. I lost half of two fingers and parts of 4 toes. I was very lucky, my parents didn't allow amputation and most of the damage healed nicely. Please know that you can reach out to me for support. I am doing really well now. I know you can get through this. Hugs.
I hope this post find everyone the last because we are even in our hard times or confusing times we all know we are in her good times!!! I wanted to share a phone number with you its 1800 772-5623 this number is for a program called Medishare where Christians get together and they help one another:) I hope this is something that will bless your family..... may God's peace that passes all understanding be all of yours and may this whole experience build you and others around you:)
Hi Kevin, I hope you have been bombarded with offers to get you back on skis. If not I am throwing my hat in, I volunteered for 13 years at Denver's adaptive waterski program. I live now in Pittsburgh and my brother is in East Lansing so distance isn't that bad. I would love to help and my heart goes out to you. John ps ever hydrofoiled? that is fun! Barefooting may be out (can't sink the new feet, too expensive) but everything else is possible.
I just read your story and everything you wrote is what has happened to my brother last year in April. He is 27 years old and he was working in the Information System field. He was perfectly healthy before all this happened. He went to Northwestern Hospital in Chicago with flu- like symptoms. It was also unclear what had happened to him but they found out he had strep A 1 bacteria that when to his blood. He then went through septic toxic shock. His heart stopped for 6 minutes and all his organs failed. Doctors also said he was the most sick person in the hospital. Just like in your case he was put on medication to keep his blood pressure up but unfortunately blood didn't go to his fingers or toes. He later had to get 1 leg amputated and the other had the toes removed. Also they partially amputated fingers on both hands. He had to stay in the hospital for 3 months and then transferred to rehab and then was transferred to another hospital. Today he lives at home and my mom helps him to take him to appointments or do any daily activity. I will pray for your family and I hope your positive energy will help you get through this. Feel free to reach out to me if you ever need someone to talk to who can relate to you.
Hi Kevin Breen family! I have a similar story here is my link for you to read! If I can help in any way please feel free to contact me! I know the struggles and the climbing medical bills. I'm also going thru a divorce my husband has abandoned me after 12 years. Good luck and prayers for your recovery! Please see my story on Go Fund Me "Strong As Steele I will Survive" Kim Gilliam Steele