Thailand's coin-eating turtle unconscious after 2nd surgery

22 March, 2017, 00:32 | Author: Lorraine Moran
  • Turtle who underwent operation after eating 915 coins dies

A turtle in Thailand which underwent surgery to remove hundreds of coins from her stomach has died from blood poisoning.

Bank lived in a public pond in Chonburi province, about 110 miles south east of Bangkok, Thailand, where tourists had tossed in loose change.

Piggy Bank's shell was cracked, swollen and infected when she was found, leaving her rescuers anxious that she had a tumour.

"Piggy Bank" the sea turtle recovers from her first operation to remove 915 coins from her stomach on March 6.

Vet Nantarika Chansue removed the coins two weeks ago in an operation lasting hours, but a check-up on Saturday revealed problems with the turtle's intestines and doctors performed a second operation.

Piggy Bank, a green turtle, hit the headlines after a four hour operation to remove the coins, that was thought to have been successful, took place.

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The death of this turtle, believed to be about 25 years old, is prompting some soul-searching about a practice that is believed to bring good luck in Thailand. Many coins had reportedly become corroded or partially dissolved over time.

The green sea turtle, named Omsin, or "piggy bank" in Thai, had been finding it hard to swim normally after swallowing five kilograms of coins thrown into her pool for good luck.

Doctors said the removal of the coins had created a space in Omsin's stomach that had probably blocked blood flow in her intestine.

Typically, a green sea turtle has a lifespan of around 80 years, said Roongroje Thanawongnuwech, dean of Chulalongkorn University's veterinary faculty.

"At 10.10am she went with peace", Chansue, the vet in charge of Chulalongkorn hospital's aquatic research centre, told reporters, adding: "She is my friend, teacher and patient".



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