Flesh-eating bacteria victim Aimee Copeland gets new bionic hand - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Flesh-eating bacteria victim Aimee Copeland gets new bionic hands

Posted: Updated:
The i-Limb Ultra Prosthetic Hand (Touch Bionics) The i-Limb Ultra Prosthetic Hand (Touch Bionics)

Last summer, the nation was captivated by the story of Aimee Copeland, a University of West Georgia graduate student who lost both her hands and a leg to a terrible bout with flesh-eating bacteria, which she contracted during a zip-lining accident.  

Now, a little over a year later, 25-year-old Copeland has been fitted with a new pair of prosthetic hands, which allow her to wipe down tables, fold towels and even straighten her hair, WLTX.com reported.  

Thanks to a gift from Touch Bionics in Hilliard, Ohio, Copeland is the first woman in the world with bilateral upper limb amputations to be fitted with iLimb Ultra Prosthetic Hands.  According to the company, the prosthetic hands cost $100,000 each, but Touch Bionics gave them to Copeland free of charge, as she had run out of insurance to pay for them herself.

To date, the iLimb hands are the most advanced and most versatile high-tech prosthetic hands available, and Copeland has spent the past week in Hilliard getting them fitted and learning how to use them.  In a video from WXIA of Columbus, Ohio, she was able to delicately pick up a single M&M.

“It feels amazing, because you know, with the other arms I had, they really didn’t feel like an extension of my body,” Copeland told WXIA.  “This just feels very freeing; it’s more light-weight. And the hand actually… it seems like this could be my actual hand.”

Copeland’s ordeal began in May 2012, when she was enjoying a trip kayaking down a creek with some of her friends in Carrollton, Ga.  But when Copeland stopped to ride on a homemade zip line along the water, the line snapped and cut a large gash in her left calf.  

Doctors ultimately had to staple her leg up with 22 staples, and they told her to take pain medication.  But the pain did not subside, so a friend drove Copeland to the emergency room the next day, where doctors diagnosed her with necrotizing fasciitis – the infection and destruction of a layer of tissue right underneath the skin.  The bacteria had entered Copeland’s body through the gash she had received during the zip-lining accident.  

Despite her initial odds of survival being “slim to none,” then 24-year-old Copeland eventually pulled through, but both her hands and her entire left leg had to be amputated in order to ensure her survival.  After two months in the hospital and two months of rehabilitation, Copeland returned to her renovated home in Snellville, Ga., where she began physical therapy.

Click for more from WLTX.com.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2013/05/17/flesh-eating-bacteria-victim-aimee-copeland-gets-new-bionic-hands/#ixzz2TprVuXkE

  • Viral StoriesMore>>

  • Lane marking mess on I-66 eastbound near Centreville, Va.

    Lane marking mess on I-66 eastbound near Centreville, Va.

    Monday, August 25 2014 6:20 PM EDT2014-08-25 22:20:44 GMT
    It was commuter confusion out on Interstate 66 Monday morning. Drivers heading eastbound towards Washington D.C. wound up seeing their traffic lanes suddenly turn into a mess. Lane stripes somehow pulled away from the road surface and created a mess of tangled tape and lanes that didn't make sense.
    It was commuter confusion out on Interstate 66 Monday morning. Drivers heading eastbound towards Washington D.C. wound up seeing their traffic lanes suddenly turn into a mess. Lane stripes somehow pulled away from the road surface and created a mess of tangled tape and lanes that didn't make sense.
  • New marijuana drug 'Wax' looks and feels like lip balm

    New marijuana drug 'Wax' looks and feels like lip balm

    Friday, August 22 2014 7:52 PM EDT2014-08-22 23:52:09 GMT
    It goes by the name Wax, Butter and Honeycomb on the streets, and it can pack a kick equal to 15 to 20 joints of marijuana. The new drug looks and feels like lip balm. It's made from the oils of marijuana plants and has a high level of THC - the chemical that produces a high.
    It goes by the name Wax, Butter and Honeycomb on the streets, and it can pack a kick equal to 15 to 20 joints of marijuana. The new drug looks and feels like lip balm. It's made from the oils of marijuana plants and has a high level of THC - the chemical that produces a high.
  • Oklahoma policeman accused of sex assaults on duty

    Oklahoma policeman accused of sex assaults on duty

    Friday, August 22 2014 11:36 AM EDT2014-08-22 15:36:23 GMT
    An Oklahoma City police officer was arrested Thursday and is being held in lieu of $5 million bond after being accused of committing a series of sexual assaults against at least six women while on duty.
    An Oklahoma City police officer was arrested Thursday and is being held in lieu of $5 million bond after being accused of committing a series of sexual assaults against at least six women while on duty.
Powered by WorldNow
Untitled

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices