Girl bit by dog recovering after reconstructive surgery
HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (WSVN) -- A young girl who was attacked by her friend's dog is making progress in her recovery.
Surgeons at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital said Jacklyn Tucker, 11, is making an impressive recovery just three days after having major reconstructive surgery. "This is the incision I was describing," said Dr. Drew Schnitt, as he pointed to a photograph of Tucker's stitched up face. "That's closed now. This is actually the lower lip, the entire segment of tissue, including the side of the nasal wall here, is actually from the bottom lip here."
Last month, Tucker was attacked by her best friend's Jack Russell Terrier/Bulldog mix at a home in Royal Palm Beach. "She had a massive, devastating defect, and that's not something you see everyday," said Schnitt.
Doctors said the dog bit off part of her face. "The corner of the mouth was all removed in one piece by the dog," said Schnitt.
While at Saint Mary's Medical Center in West Palm, doctors reattached the tissue but with no blood supply, it died. "When I first heard of it, I actually thought it was a little nip ... a couple stitches, that's it," said Jack Tucker, the girl's father. "I didn't know until later in the ER."
Doctors at Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital removed the tissue and reconstructed the girl's face. They drew diagrams to explain the process. "The artery is cut here, where this incision is, but not cut here," said Schnitt.
The girl's father is impressed by the surgeons' operation. "I think they did a good job, Better than what I thought was going to be done," said Tucker. "I think she has a real good chance of looking normal."
Tucker said his daughter is tough and stubborn but is recovering quickly. "Pretty proud because she's holding up stronger than me," he said. "She won't take her medication, but she needs to take it to eat and get it out of here. She doesn't want any pain medication. She doesn't want anything."
This is the first of a series of surgeries Jacklyn will undergo. Doctors said here wounds will leave some scars but should heal without any further complication.
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11-year-old has reconstructive surgery after dog attack