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Inside College Football

Greer Remains on Ventilator After Surgery

September 11, 2003|Lonnie White | Times Staff Writer

Idaho fullback Keith Greer, a former Santa Ana Mater Dei High standout, is listed in serious condition and remains on a ventilator in the intensive care unit at a Seattle hospital, more than a week after surgery on his broken leg.

Greer developed complications from Aug. 31 surgery after breaking two bones below his right knee in the Vandals' 25-0 loss to Washington State in Seattle the day before. He is suffering from adult respiratory distress syndrome.

"He's not doing too well," Greer's aunt, Charlotte McGovern, said Wednesday. "He hasn't been conscious since Sept. 2."

Adult respiratory distress syndrome is the rapid onset of progressive malfunction of the lungs usually associated with the malfunction of other organs because of the inability to take up oxygen. The condition is associated with extensive lung inflammation and small blood vessel injury in all affected organs. There are an estimated 150,000-200,000 cases a year in the United States.

Greer, a 6-foot-2, 250-pound sophomore who caught three passes for 20 yards against Washington State, developed ARDS after surgery to repair a broken tibia and fibula. According to recent medical studies, the overall risk of mortality from ARDS is 40%. Factors that influence mortality rate include age (higher rate in those older than 65) and coexisting organ failure (higher rate with increasing number of failing organs).

"He's stable right now but still in serious condition," McGovern said about her nephew. "Keith has a huge extended family and all of our prayers go out for him."

A fund has been set up for Greer and his family. Donations to the Keith Greer Benefit Fund can be made at FirstBank, 201 S. Jackson St., Moscow, Idaho 83843.

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