Rape victim’s condition better, still on ventilator: Docs

New Delhi: The 23-year-old gangrape victim's condition was a "shade better than yesterday" as her vital parameters have shown marginal improvement, but she is still critical and continues to be on ventilator support.

Doctors at the Safdarjung Hospital, who have been closely monitoring the girl's health, said she is psychologically "stable, conscious and meaningfully communicative".

The victim was gangraped and brutally assaulted on December 16 in a moving bus and thrown out. Six persons have been arrested in connection with the incident.

"The girl's platelet count and total lycolyte count have improved when compared to yesterday. And this improvement is after pumping in of blood, platelets and plasma. The real improvement would be when her body starts producing all these," Dr Sunil Jain, general surgeon of the hospital, said.

He said the girl's liver functions and lab profile are by and large fine, though she is running a fever of 102 degrees to 103 degrees.

Dr P K Verma, ICU incharge, said the girl's condition was a "shade better than yesterday" and that she was talking to her relatives since morning.

He also said the level of internal bleeding has been controlled to a considerable extent while the increase in the level of bilirubin, the yellow breakdown product of normal heme catabolism, which stood at 7.3 today is a "serious cause of concern".

Sepsis, a severe blood infection that can lead to organ failure, is the cause for internal bleeding, but doctors say the examination of blood cultures have established that they are on the "right track".

Verma said she continues to be on ventilator support though it has been reduced a little. "She has got sepsis. She still needs partial support. The drains which we gave has drained well," he said.

The platelet count has increased to 81,000 from yesterday's 70,000. A normal platelet count in a healthy individual is between 150,000 and 450,000 per micro litres of blood.

The girl was subjected to psychiatric counselling this morning along with her parents. Dr Rastogi of the Psychology Department said despite her fragile body condition, the girl is "stable, conscious and meaningfully communicative"

"She is very positive about her future. She has got the fighting spirit. She is coping well," he said.