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UPDATE : Giffords Breathing On Her Own

Thoughts and Prayers go out to the Giffords’ and all of the other victims in this tragedy.

Just days after being shot the head, doctors say Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is breathing on her own.

Dr. Michael LeMole, chief of neurosurgery at University Medical Center in Tucson, said Tuesday during a press conference that they’ve left a breathing tube in Giffords to protect her airway, but the congresswoman is drawing breaths on her own. She’s alert and responding to doctors.

“I’m happy to say that she’s holding her own, her status is the same as it was yesterday; she’s still following those simple commands,” LeMole said. “We’ve been able to back off on some of that sedation and in fact, she’s able to generate her own breaths; she’s breathing on her own. In fact the only reason we keep that breathing tube in is to protect her airway so that she doesn’t have complications like pneumonia.”

Six people are still hospitalized after the shooting Saturday at a Safeway supermarket in Tucson. The attack killed six and injured 14 others.

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