Surgeons fix boy's skull compression after horse kick
PAITEN Levesque has spent more time in hospital this year than out of it, but that's about to change today.
The nine-year-old boy also has a scar and a story to tell his mates back home in the Northern Territory after a freak accident on January 6.
Paiten has been given the all-clear from his surgical and medical team after undergoing a four-hour operation to repair a severely indented fractured skull from a horse kick.
Doctors removed bone fragments lodged close to his brain after horse struck the rear of his head, causing a 1.5cm depression behind his right ear.
He had been leading a horse on the property where his dad James Levesque works near Bowenville when an accidental lead-rope flick spooked the thoroughbred mare.
Mr Levesque said he would never forget the sound of the horse striking his son.
He was about five paces away and heard the thud, jumping into action and hailed down a passing motorist as he helped his son.
Paiten was airlifted to Toowoomba Hospital but, due to the seriousness of the injuries, was immediately flown to the Brisbane Children's Hospital.
A specialist team repaired his skull and stabilised the major cranial arteries.
"He was in (intensive care unit) for a day for observations then he was moved to his ward," Mr Levesque said.
"He was in there until early this week then discharged to the Ronald McDonald House.
"He had his stitches out (yesterday) and is going home (today)."
The lucky recovery followed a few weeks of fun for Paiten and his dad who he flies to see once a year from Alice Springs.
Mr Levesque thanked everyone involved in the harrowing ordeal, from the passing motorists who called 000 to the RACQ LifeFlight crew for the airlift, the hospital team and the staff at the Ronald McDonald House in Brisbane.