PITTSBURGH, NOV. 26 -- Tabatha Foster, who received five organs in a transplant operation Nov. 1, was taken off a respirator today, and she watched a Thanksgiving Day parade on television as doctors upgraded her condition.
"Tabatha Foster is awake, alert and talkative this Thanksgiving Day," said hospital spokeswoman Lynn McMahon. "Her vital signs are very stable."
Doctors at Children's Hospital took the 3-year-old Madisonville, Ky., girl off a respirator at 8 a.m. after a similar effort failed Wednesday night, hospital officials said.
Hospital officials reported that Tabatha watched a holiday parade. Her condition was upgraded from critical to critical but stable, a hospital official said.
"She has the parade on," said Mary Jo Matthews, a nursing supervisor. "She wouldn't get any pumpkin pie or anything like that. That could aggravate her condition."
Roy and Sandra Foster stayed at their daughter's bedside in intensive care and watched the girl receive the highly concentrated intravenous feeding that helps to keep her alive.
Tabatha also received a pancreas, small intestine and parts of a stomach and colon in the operation. Two people previously underwent five organ transplants. One died within hours, the other within four days.
Tabatha is jaundiced, which could indicate any of several liver ailments, Matthews said. Doctors were reluctant to predict what course the child's recovery might take or even if she will survive.
The youngster was born with a twisted small intestine that caused blood-flow problems and doctors removed most of the organ shortly after her birth. She has been fed intravenously all but a few days of her life.