Sean Ziegler

Survivor

I am a 40-year-old male. I was very active, an athlete. I started with a fever and flu-like symptoms one day. I ate contaminated chicken meat that caused salmonella. The salmonella made its way into my blood. (Sepsis and Bacterial Infections)

After three weeks of doctors visits and different antibiotics, I ended up in my bed paralyzed and unable to move. I was helped to the hospital by my in-laws. When I arrived at the hospital the doctor was guessing I had something called a fever of unknown origin. He said it would be a needle in a haystack if it was something serious. That is until he did a blood culture.

About 45 minute later, a sepsis alert was put over the loud speaker for bed 18. I looked up and I was bed 18. I was immediately rushed off and intubated. The sepsis had affected my heart and I had 3 vegetations on my valves.  I had two vegetations on my mitral valve and one vegetation on my aortic valve.  The vegetation’s were smaller than a nanometer so they didn’t cause much damage but I do have a small leak in my mitral valve now. I was in the hospital for about a month and don’t have much memory of the first two weeks. I went home with a PICC line for 10 weeks of intravenous antibiotics. I now live with unrest. I don’t sleep and am in constant pain. I was told this is post septic syndrome.  (Sepsis and Post-Sepsis Syndrome) This is very recent so I am still dealing with nightmares and pain to the point where it takes me 20 minutes to get out of bed. I was very close to death so I am so happy to be alive. I am still doing research to learn more about my post sepsis symptoms but again I am very grateful to the infectious disease team who saved me. Much love and peace.