Malala Yousafzai, the girls' rights activist who was shot in the head by the Taliban in October 2012, is preparing for her final surgeries.
The BBC reports that in the next few days, a surgeon will implant a titanium plate in Yousafzai's skull and a cochlear implant to restore hearing in her left ear, which was severely damaged. Doctors have also been working to revive a nerve on the left side of her face. "There is a very good chance after this procedure that within a year to 18 months, this will completely recover," Dr. Rosser, the medical director of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, UK told CNN.
Medical experts in charge of Malala's care report that she is determined and cheerful. She is aware of what the shooting and her survival means for the immediate future. "She's not naive at all about what happened to her and the situation in terms of her high profile. She's incredibly determined to continue to speak for her cause" Dr. Rosser told the Guardian.
Yousafzai was targeted by the Taliban early in 2012 after she wrote a diary under a pen name and published by the BBC that criticized the Taliban and the challenges faced by girls trying to get an education in Pakistan. In October, she was shot in the head after two men approached her school van on her way home from school. She was immediately rushed to a Pakistani hospital where doctors removed the bullets lodged in her head. She was then transferred to Queen Elizabeth Hospital for specialized treatment.
Media Resources: BBC 1/30/2013; CNN 1/30/2013; Guardian 1/30/2013; Feminist Newswire 1/4/2013