Aimee Copeland fights for life after becoming victim of flesh-eating microbes

Aimee Copeland fights for life after becoming victim of flesh-eating microbes

Carrollton : GA : USA | May 12, 2012 at 12:40 PM PDT
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Zip Line Injury Georgia college student Aimee Copeland flesh-eating bacteria

Georgia young woman Aimee Copeland, 24, who has already lost one leg to a life-threatening disease called necrotizing fasciitis, is in serious condition and may also lose her hands and remaining foot, according to a report.

Copeland is admitted in the Doctors Hospital of Augusta. Her left leg and part of abdomen were removed last week following the infection. She contracted the disease after injuring her calf in a zip line accident almost 10 days ago.

Copeland's family said she suffered heart attack a week ago after her surgery.

Her father informed on Thursday that her other extremities would also have to be amputated now, because blood vessels there had died as the disease had spread. According to the same report, her father, Andy Copeland, told ABC News, "I couldn't conceive of what it would be like for my daughter to lose her hand and the only other foot she has, as well, and that appears to be what is going to happen."

"The most important thing is my daughter is still alive,” he added.

He also said that Aimee had not been informed about the bad news of upcoming amputations and that a psychiatrist would break the news to her later. "There’s no way I would reveal that to her in her current state. I believe that it would just traumatize her further,” said Copeland's father.

The graduate student of University of West Georgia is trying to communicate with her family by mouthing words and she is in a fighting spirit.

"Aimee is alert and trying to mouth questions," her father, Andy Copeland, wrote on a website, which gives latest updates to friends and supporters all over country. He went on to describe her condition, saying, "Her breathing tube has been reoriented to increase her comfort and allow us to try to read her lips. She said: `I can't talk!' We told her it was because of the tube, and we explained the need for it. The girl said, `Take it out!' she was also curious and asked her family questions like `What happened?' and `Where am I?'"

Andy Copeland informed friends and well-wishers that Aimee had not suffered brain damage and that a doctor said her lungs function was improving. He also admitted that the journey ahead for Aimee would be a tough one.

Her parents and sister remain at her side during this difficult phase, while her friends and fellow graduates at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton are holding vigils and organizing blood drives while desperately praying for Copeland to recover.

Michelle Lincaster is based in Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America, and is a Reporter on Allvoices.
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