If there's any silver lining, rehabilitation is now a sophisticated science at the forefront of treating people like Giffords. Just a couple of decades ago, rehab was little more than physical therapy for shuffling stroke victims and wheelchair-bound quadriplegics. It was a last resort after doctors had done all they could.
An early start is key to limiting permanent damage, and TIRR Memorial Hermann rehab hospital where Giffords will be treated uses high-tech tools to push the brain to rewire itself.
Dr. Gerard Francisco, the hospital's chief medical officer, said Saturday that she was "even more alert" Saturday and progressing nicely with therapy.