This Woman Had a Live Fragmentation Grenade Stuck Inside Her Face

By Jesus Diaz on at

Karla Flores was peacefully selling seafood on the street when she heard an explosion. An object hit her face, knocking her down. When she woke up she was in a hospital with a live fragmentation grenade stuck inside her face.

Eight horus later, Karla had an operation that liberated her from the deadly device that could have killed her and everyone else within a 32-foot (10 meters) radius. Today she's completely recovered. This is how it all happened.

The 32-year-old Karla Flores was selling seafood under a hellish sun on a street of Culiacán, the largest city in the state of Sinaloa, in northwestern Mexico. All of the sudden she heard an explosive noise. When she tried to turn around to see what it was, she was smashed by an object on her face. The impact made her fall violently on the sidewalk. All she remembers from that moment is that she felt a burning sensation on her face and, when she touched it, there was blood on her hands.

Luckily for her, an anonymous passerby took her in a car and drove her to the hospital. There, doctors saw that something was inside her head, on the right side of her face. The x-ray showed a weird object which was quickly identified as the head of a fragmentation grenade by military personell. Apparently, the grenade was fired with a grenade launcher—the noise that Karla heard—but it didn't explode when it hit her face.

The device, however, could have exploded at any moment, killing everyone in a 32-foot radius. Just one wrong movement and that would be it. Quickly, the hospital personell isolated Karla far away from the rest of the patients. At this time, she could barely breath. The clock was ticking, it was too dangerous and many doctors didn't want to operate her under those circumstances.

Finally, the head of the hospital, Dr. Gaxiola Meza, asked for volunteers. Four brave people said yes: Two anesthesiologists, Felipe Ortiz y Cristina Soto, the nurse Rodrigo Arredondo and Dr. Lidia Soto. Along with two explosive experts from the Mexican army, they took Karla to an open field to operate her. They took all the surgical equipment with them, including light sources. That way, in case they made a mistake, nobody but then would have been affected.

There, and only with local anesthesia, Karla had a tracheotomy so she could breath while they extracted the explosive device. The military experts guided the doctor, who had no armor, to take it out in the right way. She couldn't rotate it, just slowly extract it from the head. Around midnight, the operation was complete.

Karla had to go through other procedures after that. She has no teeth now, her face is deformed by the giant scar and, according to the doctors, she has a few years of operations ahead. But she survived the unsurvivable.

In Mexico, they now call her the Miracle Woman. I'm not surprised. [YouTube]