The flesh eating bacteria that claimed Aimee Copeland’s leg may not claim her remaining foot and fingers, something that doctors had been anticipating.
The flesh eating bacteria has kept Copeland in intensive care in an Augusta hospital with a ventilator, but the 24-year-old is still smiling, laughing and communicating by mouthing words to her family.
Copeland’s father, Andy, said of her good spirits, “The nurses commented that the ICU that we’re in sounds like a game show.” The family makes a game out of lip reading, “She really has fun with it, and we all end up laughing,” said her father after describing how her request for a laptop was mistaken for a “lamb chop.”
The medication Copeland is on for combating the flesh eating bacteria has left her to not remember the accident. Her father said, “I don’t know that she’s aware yet that she’s lost her left leg.” He is excited for his daughter to become strong enough to communicate, butn he knows it’ll be bittersweet because she will also learn and comprehend her situation. “It’s going to be sweet because she finally, we can communicate with her. But at the same time, it’s going to be bitter because there will be certain things revealed to her that will be painful.”
Andy Copeland told the Associated Press (AP) that doctors now believe they will be able to save the palms of Aimee’s hands, her fingers and her right foot; parts of her body that her family believed she would have to lose just days ago. “The doctor can’t fathom a reason for why she’s improved the way she has. Her spirits are extraordinarily high. I am absolutely amazed,” Andy Copeland told AP.
The flesh eating bacteria victim has shifted her questions from where she is to how her sister’s boyfriend is doing, a sign to her father of his daughter’s resilience.
However, Andy Copeland told the AP, “She’s going to be here for months. She’s going to need to regrow skin that was removed. She’s going to need to learn to use prosthetics. She’s going to still be on dialysis for a while.” Aimee Copeland not only has to deal with an amputation but also kidney failure and other organ damage that was caused by the flesh eating bacteria.
Copeland’s father went on Good Morning America to talk about his daughter’s condition with the flesh eating bacteria that has a rather high mortality rate. “I believe we’ve had victory over death here,” he said. “And that’s not something that happens every day.”