Gabrielle Giffords Doesn't Know Extent Of Arizona Shooting

Illustration for article titled Gabrielle Giffords Doesnt Know Extent Of Arizona Shooting

Six weeks after Gabrielle Giffords was shot, her doctor tells CBS New that she's making remarkable progress and interacting with friends and family, but she still doesn't know exactly what happened to her. "She certainly knows that there's been a traumatic event here," said Pia Carusone, Giffords' chief of staff. "The details of the severity of the injuries to the others, you know, she doesn't know yet about. But she will in time, when she's, you know, at a higher level of communication. Doctors have said it's not really fair, as you can imagine, to tell something so tragic to someone that might not have the ability to ask the detailed questions that someone will have when they hear this news."

Giffords is expected her to have long-term issues with communication, reading, and writing, but currently she can express short thoughts and laughs at appropriate times. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who visited Giffords recently, says, "You could see she really wanted to engage. And she wanted to be responsive and she really responds with facial expressions and smiles and frowns. But I also saw a little frustrationin wanting to try to respond, because she understood and she wasn't yet able to."

Gabrielle Giffords Knows Little About Shooting [CBS News]

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This might be one of the more realistic descriptions of what is going on with Gabrielle Giffords since she was shot. Traumatic brain injury can lead to a multitude of cognitive and expressive issues, and it is not surprising that this information is being kept from her right now. That she has had any progress since the shooting is a testament to both her own perseverance and her team of dedicated specialists - but imagine how awful it would be for her to be able to take this information in, but not express herself or form the questions she would have.