Doctors amputate Zsa Zsa Gabor's right leg

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Old 15-Jan-2011
Doctors amputate Zsa Zsa Gabor's right leg

Los Angeles: Zsa Zsa Gabor's right leg was amputated on Friday in an operation that doctors said was necessary to save her life.

Gabor, who turns 94 on February 6, was being watched carefully, but there were no complications, doctors at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center said.

"The surgery today went well, however, she is in frail health so we will continue to monitor her closely," said Dr. David Rigberg, associate professor of vascular surgery.

Gabor, who had an infection in her leg for several months, was hospitalised on January 2 after efforts to save her leg with antibiotics failed.

Gabor broke her hip and had replacement surgery in July, and has been hospitalised several times since for swelling in her legs and blood clots throughout her body.

Publicist John Blanchette said the wounds wouldn't heal, so doctors had no choice but to operate.

"Ms. Gabor needed an amputation above her knee due to poor circulation and a large ulcerated area on her right leg," Rigberg said. "After consulting with her husband, Frederic Prinz von Anhalt, we felt this was the best medical course of action."

In August, Gabor was in critical condition and asked for a priest during a hospital visit. She recovered and returned home.

Gabor has used a wheelchair since she was partially paralysd in a 2002 car accident, and she had a stroke in 2005.

She retreated from the spotlight after the accident and stroke. She liked staying home and watching soap operas, game shows and old movies, husband von Anhalt told reporters in July. She detested having her picture taken by the paparazzi while she was in her wheelchair.

"She wants people to remember her as she was years ago," he said then.

A Hungarian-born sex symbol of the 1950s and 1960s, Gabor had a brief and unremarkable film career, from Moulin Rouge in 1952 to Queen of Outer Space in 1958.

An hour after the surgery, Gabor's husband said, she was still in a deep sleep. "She's going to be OK," he said.

Before the surgery, they didn't talk about the operation, he said. "We didn't want her to get a heart attack and we did not want her to have blood pressure problems," van Anhalt said.

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