A 56-year-old man said he feels “more alive” after strangers helped raise enough funds for a transformative surgery on his neck that removed nearly 40 pounds of extra flesh. Keith Crowell’s saga began 13 years ago, after cuts from a shave at the barber didn’t heal correctly and resulted in massive keloids, Fox 6 Now reported.
Crowell, of Milwaukee, had sought to have the keloids removed but was ultimately denied by insurers, Fox 6 New reported. A GoFundMe page raised nearly $27,000 and helped get him to New York to see a specialist for the two-part procedure, which included removal and radiation. The first part was completed in May, and he returned to New York this month for the final steps.
“I feel a lot lighter,” Crowell told the news outlet, after the second procedure. “It’s a lot of weight off my shoulders. I’m energetic. I feel more of myself. I feel more alive.”
While the scars from the procedure may take time to fade, doctors said there is a 96 percent chance that the keloids will not return, Fox 6 Now reported.
“My burden is over with,” Crowell, who works as a security guard at a casino and is now an advocate for others living with keloids, said. “I can sleep at night. I can eat.”