U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Friday was moved from Tucson to Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center in Houston, where she will do what most expect to be a difficult rehabiliation from the gunshot wound she sustained to the head Jan. 8.
Giffords, who has so far been making a miraculous recovery from her horrific injury, was greeted with crowds on the streets of Tuscon as she was taken by ambulance to Davis-Monthan Air Force base to fly to Houston. According to The New York Times, Giffords was well aware that the people with signs and balloons were wishing her well.
She smiled and she teared up when she heard the applause from the crowd, trauma surgeon Dr. Randall Riese told The Times.
Giffords was transported by private jet to William P. Hobby Airport in Houston and landed at 1:30 p.m. Friday. She was then taken by helicopter to Memorial Hermann.
In Houston Giffords was immediately put in an intensive care unit, where six physicians ran tests on her. The congresswoman, who was shot through the brain, hasn’t spoken yet but is following commands and seems to understand what is said to her.
But it’s not known yet which of the 40-year-old’s cognitive or other abilities were impacted by the bullet that traversed the left side of her brain. The left lobe controls the right side of the body, and Giffords’ muscles on her right side are weak and showing some paralysis, The Times reported.
Giffords will eventually be moved to the Institute for Rehabilitation and Research at Memorial Hermann, which treats patients with brain and spiral injuries.