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Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' Condition Upgraded from Serious to Good

Mark Kelly watches President Obama deliver his State of the Union address, Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2011, in the hospital room of his wife, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Photo Courtesy - Office of U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords(HOUSTON) -- Doctors for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords upgraded her condition from serious to good late Tuesday night and said she is ready to be transferred to a brain rehabilitation hospital as early as Wednesday morning pending a medical review, ABC News has learned.

The fluid accumulation in her brain that concerned doctors over the weekend has already begun to subside.

An tentative news conference has been scheduled for Wednesday afternoon, where Rep. Giffords' medical team will give an update on her progress, according to a news release from Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center, the hospital where Giffords is currently recovering.

Meanwhile, at Tuesday night's State of the Union address, members of both political parties were wearing black and white ribbons in a show of solidarity with Giffords and the people of Tucson.  In a special gesture, her friends in Congress left one seat unfilled.

In Houston, Giffords' husband, NASA Commander Mark Kelly, watched Tuesday night's State of the Union Address from his wife's bedside at the hospital.  While he keeps watch over her care, the clock is ticking on a critical decision.  Kelly has said he will decide within two weeks whether he will command the space shuttle Endeavor's final mission in April.

Over the weekend, doctors inserted a small drain in Giffords' skull to remove the brain fluid that had delayed her transfer out of ICU.  Experts say it is not uncommon for someone suffering a traumatic brain injury to have such fluid accumulation, caused when the brain bleeds or swells.

Giffords' doctors have expressed confidence that she has passed the most critical period for complications and say that the fluid is not keeping Giffords from receiving three hours of physical therapy a day.

Giffords was brought by a specially equipped private plane from Tucson to Houston's Hobby Airport last Friday, and immediately was transported to the Texas Medical Center's intensive care unit by medical helicopter.  She will eventually be treated at nearby TIRR Memorial Hermann. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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