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Teen With Severe Frostbite Recovers After Surgery

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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DULUTH, Minn. (AP) — The mother of a University of Minnesota Duluth student who nearly froze to death last month says her daughter is recovering from surgery on her frostbitten feet.

Teri Lommel writes on her daughter’s CaringBridge website that she lost only the tips of her toes on one foot, which should help with balance and walking, and the other foot was amputated just below the ball of the foot. Surgeons also removed skin and tissue from Alyssa Lommel’s heels at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, her mother said.

The 19-year-old woman suffered severe frostbite and hypothermia after a night outdoors in Duluth when temperatures dropped to minus-17. Police say Lommel, a sophomore from St. Cloud, had been out drinking with friends Dec. 6 and was dropped off at her Duluth house around midnight. A passer-by spotted Lommel on the front stoop of the house next door about nine hours later.

Her mother wrote that medical staff removed some bandages Tuesday, causing her daughter a great amount of pain.

“It is very hard to see your child in such pain and know there is nothing you can do to take that pain away,” Lommel said.

Lommel said her daughter has been moved out of the intensive care unit to make room for new patients, many who suffered frostbite in the subzero temperatures that gripped Minnesota earlier this week.

“Winter is only half over,” Lommel writes. “Please be careful in these frigid temperatures!”

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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