Silva was vacationing with her family. She had to have her leg amputated about 15 cm above the knee. Hospital sources said the young woman arrived with zero blood pressure, in extremely critical condition, and had lost a lot of blood and suffered from several heart attacks.

A state committee charged with monitoring shark attacks said Silva was the first woman to die from a shark bite in Pernambuco state since the area began keeping records of such incidents in 1992.

Prior to Monday's incident, the last known attack occurred in 2004, when a shark bit a woman who survived. Silva's was the 59th shark attack registered by the committee in the past 21 years -- 24 of which were fatal.

Of those attacks, 23 took place at the same beach, Boa Viagem, and 17 at the neighbouring beach of Piedade. The statistics show over 70 percent of the victims were between the ages of 14 and 25.The waters off Pernambuco have the highest concentration of sharks of Brazil's entire coastline.

(Agencies)

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