Lumby’s Miriam Hoekstra (centre), mother of three kids, is undergoing health issues and post-surgery complications after a cyst the size of a melon was discovered on her ovary and fallopian tube. A GoFundMe page has been started by a family member as Hoekstra faces being off work for at least a year. (GoFundMe photo)

Lumby’s Miriam Hoekstra (centre), mother of three kids, is undergoing health issues and post-surgery complications after a cyst the size of a melon was discovered on her ovary and fallopian tube. A GoFundMe page has been started by a family member as Hoekstra faces being off work for at least a year. (GoFundMe photo)

Campaign begins to help Lumby woman taken ill

Miriam Hoekstra originally had cyst removed, but is suffering from severe post-surgery complications

A Lumby woman devoted to being a care aide needs help herself.

Miriam Hoekstra is dealing with post-surgery complications and her sister-in-law, Kate Hoekstra, has started a GoFundMe page on behalf of Miriam as she faces a long road of recovery.

Earlier this year, Miriam began experiencing extreme pain. In April, she was diagnosed with a cyst the size of a melon on her ovary and fallopian tube. She underwent a hysterectomy on June 15.

While doctors thought the surgery went well, Miriam was not recuperating as she should. It was discovered her bowel had been lacerated and she was then raced into surgery. Doctors were not able to repair the bowel so Miriam was given an ostomy bag to wear for at least months. But if the organ doesn’t heal, she can expect to wear the bag for life.

Since the bag was put in place, Miriam has become septic and had more than nine litres of fluid drained from her body as her kidneys stopped functioning. The extra weight of the retained water caused her lungs to collapse. She is currently on heavy doses of antibiotics which are still not killing all the infections in her body.

“When her kidneys failed, Miriam was moved to Kelowna where she could receive regular dialysis,” said Kate. “This helped for a few days, but then her hemoglobin dropped significantly so they sent her for a blood transfusion. Shortly after the transfusion fluid entered her lungs and she went into a coma. Emergency dialysis resulted in four litres of fluids being removed from her body.”

Miriam awoke from the coma, she appeared to be doing much better but still had no kidney function.

Miriam is now out of intensive care, but her heart continues to be problematic, and they have yet to diagnose the cause. They want to give her another blood transfusion but are not able to because she may have to go on a transplant list, and a transfusion could result in too many different antibodies in her body, which could cause her to reject a new kidney.

“Doctors are putting Miriam on a regular dialysis schedule and have surgically inserted a piece of equipment to facilitate the long-term removal of fluids and allow some of the tubes in her neck to be removed,” said Kate. “Hopefully her kidneys wake up.”

Miriam has three children aged 16, nine and five waiting for their mom. She has spent years of her life as a care aide but is unable to work, for at least a year, said Kate.

“This is going to be very hard for her physically, emotionally, and financially,” said Kate, hoping the GoFundMe page will help remove some of the financial pressure, and thereby some of the emotional stress.”

The goal is for $20,000 to be reached for Miriam.

READ MORE: Vernon recovery program receives donation

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


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

Just Posted

A proposed development would see two four-storey apartment buildings erected on Adair Street in Armstrong, next to the Nor-Val Arena. (Google Maps)
‘Affordable’ apartments hot topic in Armstrong

Public hearing to reconvene next Monday to hear out residents’ concerns about rezoning greenspace

Amanda Parsons, a registered nurse on staff at the Northwood Care facility, administers a dose of the Moderna vaccine to Ann Hicks, 77, in Halifax on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan-Pool
61 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Interior Health

Twenty-nine people are in hospital, seven of whom are in intensive care

A cow moose wanders around the Silver Star Elementary School neighbourhood Tuesday, Jan. 19. (Contributed)
Moose chases two people near Vernon school

Conservation and dog control attending to the situation

Responding to recent cases of COVID-19 confirmed at Shuswap schools, School District 83 Superintendent Peter Jory has asked staff and the public to be vigilant when it comes to the practice of good behaviours that help prevent the virus’ spread. (File photo)
COVID-19: North Okanagan-Shuswap school communities asked be vigilant

Superintendent Peter Jory responds to increasing COVID-19 numbers at schools.

A preliminary layout concept of Vernon’s new city centre park. Bidding opportunities are open until Feb. 5, 2021. (City of Vernon photo)
Bidding open for design of Vernon’s city centre park

City requests proposals for design services after more than 1,000 residents submit feedback

Syringe is prepared with one of B.C.’s first vials of Pfizer vaccine to prevent COVID-19, Victoria, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 caseload stays steady with 465 more Tuesday

No new outbreaks in health care facilities, 12 more deaths

(Stock photo)
EDITORIAL: COVID-19 restrictions continue to affect us all

Canada has recorded more than 700,000 confirmed cases of pandemic

A couple living at the Summerland Waterfront Resort is trying to sell their unit because of strata changes which will require them to pay significantly higher strata fees or have their unit included in the resort’s rental pool (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Couple living at Summerland resort facing increases

Permanent residents of Summerland Waterfront Resort told fees will more than double

(Big White Ski Resort)
28 more cases of COVID-19 linked to Big White cluster

More than 200 cases have been identified since the cluster was announced

Police are seeking further witnesses after an elderly woman who was struck by a vehicle in Salmon Arm succumbed to her injuries. (File Photo)
Salmon Arm pedestrian dies after being hit by truck along Highway 1

Collision took place on Jan. 15 in downtown Salmon Arm, police looking for witnesses

The sale of the Kirschner Mountain Development for $22M marks the largest in Realtor history, in the Okanagan. (Contributed)
Kelowna mountain development sold for $22M

The sale of the 640-acre Kirschner Mountain development has made the history books

New Westminster TV production designer, Rick Whitfield, has designed an office in a box for British Columbians in need of a private workspace. (BC Box Office photo)
PHOTOS: B.C. man designs ‘box office’ solution for those working from home

‘A professionally designed workspace on your property, away from the distractions of home’

Chilliwack ER doctor Marc Greidanus is featured in a video, published Jan. 18, 2021, where he demonstrates and describes effectiveness of various styles of masks. (Youtube)
VIDEO: Emergency room doctor runs through pros and cons of various masks

‘We’ve been asked to wear a mask and it’s not that hard,’ Greidanus says.

(Pixabay photo)
VIDEO: Tip to Metro Vancouver transit police helps woman 4,000 km away in Ohio

Sgt. Clint Hampton says transit police were alerted to a YouTube video of the woman in mental distress

Most Read