Kids skin their knees all the time, only to be fixed by a Band-Aid and a hug. Unfortunately, that did not suffice in a devastating case out of California. After skinning his knee in October, 3-year-old Beauden Baumkirchner underwent at least 18 surgeries over two months spent in an intensive care unit. His doctor tells USA Today that it's a "miracle" the boy is even alive. His Arizona family had been vacationing in San Diego on Oct. 5 when Beauden fell off his bike, scraping up his right knee. Beauden's parents used an antibacterial spray on the wound, then applied a Band-Aid, and Beauden got back on his bike, per KGTV. But at some point, possibly when Beauden was playing in dirt, a vicious "garden-variety staph" bacteria entered the knee, USA Today reports. His condition quickly went downhill from there.
Beauden developed a fever, difficulty breathing, and his knee turned purple. Soon, his body stopped sending blood to his limbs. He ended up fighting for his life in a hospital, where he was intubated for a week. Doctors diagnosed him with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, an antibiotic-resistant bacteria. He then developed toxic shock syndrome and sepsis. "He wasn't supposed to make it," his father, Brian, tells USA Today. But after doctors amputated both of Beauden's legs, his condition improved. His mother, Juliana, is trying to look on the bright side. "As terrible of a year as 2020 has been … humanity has been the best in our eyes," she says. She's referring not only to the medical team but to thousands of strangers who've donated to the family. Some $160,000 has been raised. (Read more amputation stories.)