Gorilla baby on the mend, following collapsed lung
Saturday, March 15, 2014 - 01:35
March 15 - Baby gorilla born in San Diego via rare Caesarian section undergoes treatment for collapsed lung. Vanessa Johnston reports.
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Mother and baby gorilla are on the mend at the San Diego Zoo.
Earlier this week, the baby was born via a rare emergency Caesarian section operation.
An x-ray confirmed that the baby gorilla had a collapsed lung. This is not the typical patient for Dr. Dawn Reeves.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) DAWN REEVES, MD, SAYING:
"I never anticipated that I would have to care for a gorilla, but all of my work that I've done with human babies is identical to what I'm doing with this baby. She behaves, from a respiratory standpoint, from a fluid standpoint, from a hematologic, infectious disease. Everything else is right on target with what we would expect in a human baby."
The medical team successfully re-inflates the baby gorilla's lung. The breathing tube is removed and she is placed on supplemental oxygen. She is then wrapped in blankets to keep warm as she awakes from the anesthesia.
As for the mother, Imani, she quickly gets back to her old self. Senior zoo veterinarian, Jeff Zuba.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) JEFF ZUBA, DVM, SAYING:
"If this was a human, you would want no exercise or movement for a few weeks after an operation like this, but within 24 hours, she was back with her troop, moving around, acting like nothing ever happened, but we're watching her closely, we're not encouraging her to move about like that, but at this point in time, she's doing great."
San Diego zoo staff continue to keep a watchful eye on mother and baby until they make a full recovery.
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