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A female gorilla born March 12 at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park was delivered by caesarean section. Immediately after being born, she suffered from breathing problems and underwent surgery Friday to repair a collapsed lung.
It is probable that the delivery caused the lung problem. Veterinarians at the zoo waited hours for the mother, Imani, to give birth naturally, but finally decided to perform the c-section operation because she was in labor for so long. This operation is rare for non-humans.
According to the New York Daily News, the park’s associate director of veterinary services, Nadine Lamberski said, “The C-section was the right decision. We think the health of the fetus would have been compromised if we delayed the surgery any longer.”
According to The Province, the team that repaired the baby gorilla’s collapsed lung consisted of vets and two doctors: a neonatal specialist and an anesthesiologist. Although the doctors normally work on human patients, they were still able to perform the surgery successfully.
The gorilla is being closely watched as she recovers.