Published On: Wed, Sep 12th, 2012

Aimee Copeland describes life as a ‘beautiful thing’ in Katie interview

Aimee Copeland, the 24-year-old who lost her hands, feet and leg to the flesh-eating bacteria earlier this year, astounded audience members Tuesday by walking onto the stage of “Katie” using a prosthetic limb and a walker.

“That felt so good,” Copeland said in answer to Katie Couric’s question about how it felt to walk again. “I’ve been sitting or lying down for so long, just being vertical. You take for granted being able to look people in the eye.”

The interview, which lasted nearly an hour, also featured her older sister, Paige, and parents Andy and Donna Copeland.

“[Life’s] a beautiful thing… even more so now,” Copeland told Katie Couric on her new self-titled show. “Senses are so deepened. Everything is more vibrant, more beautiful.”

She explained that the bacteria went undetected until her entire leg turned a “dark purple color.”

“I wasn’t able to walk. I wasn’t able to speak,” Copeland, who resisted using pain-killers during her treatment, said. “The only thing I was able to babble was, ‘I think I’m dying.'”

Copeland, who was working on her graduate thesis at University of West Georgia prior to her fall, had several stints in the hospital before doctors diagnosed her with necrotizing fasciitis, a rapidly-spreading infection that ravages body tissue.

Doctors first removed her right leg up to her hip and then amputated both of her hands and her left foot.

“I think the most extreme moment was when my dad lifted up my hands for me to see, and my fingers were black and my hands were a deep, blood red,” she said.

“I said, ‘Let’s do this.’ I mean, what else are you going to do? Live with some dead hands?”

Aimee Copeland entering the stage on “Katie” screenshot


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  1. The dark side of strep throat: What is necrotizing faciitis? - Outbreak News Today says:

    […] pyogenes (group A strep), however other bacteria have been implicated (Clostridia, Vibrio, and in the case of Aimee Copeland in 2012, […]

  2. Rochester: Hospital treating 2 cases of necrotizing fasciitis | Outbreak News Today says:

    […] The most common organism that causes this devastating disease is Streptococcus pyogenes (group A strep), however other bacteria have been implicated (Clostridia, Vibrio, and in the case of Aimee Copeland, Aeromonas.). […]

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