A Williams Lake teenager

A Williams Lake teenager

Williams Lake teenager endures foot surgery complications

A Williams Lake teenager is in B.C. Children's Hospital with ongoing complications from a routine bunion surgery done on March 17.

A Williams Lake teenager is in B.C. Children’s Hospital with ongoing complications from a routine bunion surgery done on March 17 of this year.

“It’s such a routine surgery and everything that could go wrong went wrong,” 17-year-old Kurtis Olson’s mom Kim Couture said from Ronald McDonald House in Vancouver Wednesday.

The bunion was about the size of a golf ball and a half and was causing Kurtis, who is slated to graduate from Lake City secondary this year, pain during kick boxing.

“He has competed at Nationals with Shogun Martial Arts and wanted to improve his kickboxing. That’s why he went for the surgery,” she said.

When his cast was removed eight weeks after the surgery, his foot did not look healed.

Another cast was put on Kurtis’s foot and when it was removed, they discovered he had an incubated infection and the flesh had eroded to the bone.

He went back to Children’s where he remained on a vacuum assisted closure (V.A.C.) system for eight weeks.

Kurtis returned to Williams Lake and was treated by the “amazing” wound care staff at Cariboo Memorial Hospital.

His foot appeared to be healing and, three weeks ago, Kurtis finally received the go-ahead from his plastic surgeon to take a shower for the first time in seven months.

Unfortunately, within a few days his foot had swollen up and he was experiencing excruciating pain.

He ended up back in the hospital in Williams Lake needing an antibiotics intravenous and, on Oct. 9, was readmitted to Children’s.

Since then he has had surgery to remove a centimetre of infected bone and most of the regrown tissue.

Last Monday they cut the whole top of his foot, but the corner of it started to go blue so they stopped the surgery, Couture said, noting he now has spacers between his skin and his flesh with suction on it and is not allowed to move.

“If the blood does not flow back, that area of his foot will die and we’ll be in another whole barrel of trouble,” Couture said, noting there is a chance he could lose his foot.

On Tuesday he developed an allergic reaction to the heavy duty antibiotics and his entire body broke out in hives.

Couture said the next surgery he will have, possibly on Monday, will be a bone graft and bone marrow transplant and skin will be taken from his hip to cover what was moved on his foot.

“It’s a big surgery and he’s going to be in lots of pain,” Couture said. “But like he said to me, ‘mom, I just want to feel a different pain that I know I’m going to heal and go home soon.'”

Couture normally drives a school bus for School District 27 and her husband has been working seven days a week during this time to support the family.

One of their friends has been taking care of their eight-year-old daughter and 12-year-old son when their dad is working.

As Couture spends her days and nights at the hospital she said like all the other parents she meets, it is the sense of helplessness that can be overwhelming sometimes.

“Not being able to do anything to make our children feel better or take any of this away is the most horrible feeling,” she said.

A friend of the family has created an online funding account for the family at https://www.gofundme.com/k76enzzq.











Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A string made of deer hide was cut by Tl’etinqox elder Melanie Bobby (centre) to mark the grand opening of Chilcotin River Trading Wednesday, March 3. (Chilcotin River Trading Facebook photo)
New gas bar opens in the Chilcotin at Tl’etinqox

Chilcotin River Trading opens its doors

Cariboo Memorial Hospital emergency doctor Sarah Dressler comes off a night shift on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Our Hometown: The doctor is in the house

Cariboo Memorial Hospital emergency doctor Sarah Dressler was born and raised in Williams Lake

The Williams Lake Trail Riders Arena is slated to have a new roof installed this spring after funding from the province’s Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure Program. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Trail Riders Arena, stable stalls, to get new roof at Stampede Grounds

Some of the stalls currently aren’t able to be rented out due to leaks in the roof

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
43 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

368 cases in the region remain active

A sign is seen this past summer outside Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
Yunesit’in First Nation completes second round of vaccinations

A total of 26 people have since recovered from COVID-19 after having tested positive

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. research reveals how pandemic has changed attitudes towards sex, health services

CDC survey shows that 35 per cent of people were worried about being judged

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends deadline for tourism, small business COVID-19 grants

Business owners expect months more of lost revenues

Anti-pipeline protests continue in Greater Vancouver, with the latest happening Thursday, March 4 at a Trans Mountain construction site in Burnaby. (Facebook/Laurel Dykstra)
A dozen faith-based protestors blockade Burnaby Trans Mountain site in prayer

The group arrived early Thursday, planning to ‘block any further work’

Mid day at the Vancouver Port Intersection blockade on March 3, organized by the Braided Warriors. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
Anti-pipeline blockade at Vancouver intersection broken up by police

Demonstraters were demanding the release of a fellow anti-TMX protester

(Government of B.C.)
Backcountry skiers are dwarfed by the mountains as they make their way along a mountain ridge near McGillivray Pass Lodge located in the southern Chilcotin Mountains of British Columbia, Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012. Avalanche Canada has issued a special warning to people who use the backcountry in the mountains of western Alberta and eastern British Columbia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Avalanche Canada special warning for mountains in western Alberta, eastern B.C.

Avalanche Canada also says everyone in a backcountry party needs essential rescue gear

A recently finished $4.3-million taxiway extension at the Victoria International Airport (not pictured) is unusable because of a blind spot. (Black Press Media file photo)
Blind spot leaves Victoria airport’s new $4.3-million taxiway extension unusable

Solution has been put on hold by COVID-19 pandemic, says airport authority

Most Read