Que. acid attack victim to get surgery thanks to Anderson Cooper's show
Tanya St-Arnauld is shown in an undated photo posted on a tribute page set up on her Facebook page.
The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, January 31, 2013 7:05PM EST
A Quebec woman who was disfigured in an acid attack will have her scars treated by laser surgery in the United States -- thanks to Anderson Cooper's show.
Tanya St-Arnauld appeared on "Anderson Live" on Wednesday in New York City, where she received the news that a Florida-based dermatologist would fly her down for treatment.
St-Arnauld was allegedly attacked by her ex-boyfriend after an argument last August near Montreal.
She suffered serious burns to her head and upper body, and was in a medically induced coma for days. Though she has spent months in rehab, she still has extensive scars and must wear a wig.
Dr. Jill Waibel of the Miami Dermatology and Laser Institute will offer treatment using lasers and other procedures to help reduce the scars.
St-Arnauld wiped away tears and referred to the gift as a miracle.
On the talk show, she discussed the attack, which police say was done with concrete cleaner.
"Mainly on my arms, my chest, my back, my side, all over my head," she told Cooper about the location of her injuries.
"Pretty much the top part of the body."
She said she couldn't see what was happening.
The first shot got her squarely in the eye, St-Arnauld recounted.
"I kept thinking, 'I'm going to be blind,"' she said.
"It was a pain like no other."
She said she ran downstairs, undressing along the way, and knocked on her neighbours' door wearing nothing but her undergarments.
She ran directly to their bathtub and kept rinsing her face, perhaps offseting some of the damage.
She told Cooper there had been warning signs.
Just one week before the acid attack, she alleged that her now-ex-boyfriend poured soda on her after an argument outside a hardware store.
St-Arnauld said it was the first time a physical attack had been directed at her.
Nikolas Stefanatos of Brossard, Que., was charged in the attack, with three counts of assault. He remains behind bars after a judge refused to grant him bail last October.
He returns to court next month.