Navigation Links
Rep. Giffords Continues to Improve
Date:1/17/2011

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords continues her remarkable recovery after she was gravely wounded by an assassin's bullet to her brain nine days ago: On Sunday, her doctors upgraded her condition from critical to serious.

Giffords underwent surgery Saturday to replace a breathing tube that had been in place since she was shot in the attack in Tucson that left six people dead.

The 40-year-old Giffords had been breathing on her own, but the breathing tube had been left in place as a precaution. In its place, surgeons inserted a tracheotomy tube in her windpipe, protecting her airway and allowing her to be disconnected from a ventilator, according to officials at University Medical Center in Tucson, where Giffords is being treated.

Doctors also inserted a feeding tube. Both procedures, according to the hospital, are common in people hospitalized with brain injuries.

The hospital issued a statement saying that Giffords' "recovery continues as planned."

Her doctors said earlier that, once the breathing tube was removed, they would be able to assess whether she could speak.

On Friday, doctors said Giffords was "continuing to make all the right moves in all the right directions" toward recovery. The Wall Street Journal reported that she has defied the odds and continues to show improved function day by day.

"She is beginning to carry out more complex sequences [of movement] in response to our commands, and even spontaneously," said Dr. Michael Lemole Jr., neurosurgery chief at University Medical Center. "We couldn't have hoped for any better improvement than we're seeing now."

Giffords' doctors said she has been opening her eyes more often since she first did so Wednesday. That was the day she also touched the wedding ring worn by her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, after being asked by him to do so.

On Thursday morning, doctors said Giffords was able to keep her eyes open for up to 15 minutes at a time and could move her legs and one of her hands, The New York Times reported.

"She is doing some fairly specific things with her left hand," Dr. Peter Rhee, the hospital's chief of trauma, said at the time. "She is yawning. She is starting to rub her eyes."

Lemole also noted that Giffords could "move both of her legs to command," the newspaper reported.

Doctors want to ensure that Giffords doesn't regress and are watching for pneumonia and blood clots, the Associated Press reported.

Experts said that, despite her remarkable progress, Giffords may have suffered some permanent damage, but it's not yet clear how extensive that damage might be.

Giffords was gravely injured, 13 others were wounded, and six people, including a 9-year-old girl, were killed in the Jan. 8 shooting spree that took place in front of a Safeway supermarket in Tucson, where Giffords was meeting with constituents. Jared Loughner, 22, faces multiple murder and attempted murder charges in the shootings.

Giffords, a Democrat, was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2006.

The fact that Giffords is alive is a bit of a miracle.

According to Dr. David Langer, director of cerebrovascular research at the Cushing Neuroscience Institutes, part of North Shore/Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Great Neck, N.Y., 90 percent of people with gunshot wounds to the head die.

More information

The U.S. National Institutes of Health has more on traumatic brain injury.

SOURCES: David Langer, M.D., director, cerebrovascular research, Cushing Institutes of Neuroscience, North Shore/Long Island Jewish Medical Center, Great Neck, N.Y.; The New York Times; Wall Street Journal; Associated Press


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Rep. Giffords Has Surgery to Replace Breathing Tube
2. Rep. Giffords Continues to Recover From Gunshot Wound
3. Giffords Opens Eyes. Like Watching a Miracle, Friends Say
4. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Can Move Arms, Breathe On Her Own
5. Americans life expectancy continues to fall behind other countries
6. Writing checks that bounce: World continues to backtrack on HIV treatment
7. The Kristen Renee Foundation Continues to Fight for Frederick, MD for Answers from the EPA and Fort Deterick
8. Randolph Eye Associates Continues Growth With the Addition of Dr. Emily S. Kachinsky
9. Health Podcast by World-Renowned Health Educator Celebrates 100th Episode and Continues to Offer Life-Changing Advice
10. Artificial Pancreas Continues to Show Promise
11. ENT and Allergy Associates Continues to Bolster Bayside Presence and Expertise, Adds Allergist/Immunologist Dr. Brian Safier
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Rep. Giffords Continues to Improve
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th Annual Kids Fun ... NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, Jon Letko, is ... is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, non-timed event, which ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the ... save lost souls in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission ... of the Bible. She has taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Orleans, LA (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... centers in the U.S., announced today its plans to open a flagship location in ... will occupy the former Rooms To Go store next to Office Depot in the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... AccentCare, a leader in post-acute health care, have expanded their existing home health ... Home Health. , AccentCare has been operating a joint venture home health company ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Leading pediatric oncology experts ... Washington, D.C., for the 49th Congress of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology ... of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s National, and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/28/2017)... -- Cohen Veterans Bioscience and Early Signal Foundation announce ... home sensors for real-time monitoring of patients with trauma-related ... organization focused on disruptive health solutions for rare disorders ... to record and integrate behavioral, cognitive, physiological and contextual ... ...
(Date:9/25/2017)... 25, 2017   Montrium , an industry ... today—from the IQPC Trial Master Files & Inspection ... that EastHORN Clinical Services has selected eTMF ... TMF management. EastHORN, a leading European contract research ... increase transparency to enable greater collaboration with sponsors, ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... , Sept. 22, 2017  As the latest ... Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Lindsey ... notes that the medical device industry is in an ... device tax, the 2.3% excise tax on medical device ... they also want covered patients, increased visits and hospital ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: