You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Hyperbaric chamber helps revive green turtle


Antibiotics alone failed to fix Flounder’s limp flipper. A bone infection has gripped the green turtle, confining her to swimming meandering laps in a pool rather than free in the sea.

So the folks caring for the green turtle at the Loggerhead Marinelife Center in Juno Beach, Fla., came up with a new line of treatment.

They loaded her daily into their turtle ambulance and drove her seven miles to a veterinary office where they “submerged” her in a pet-size hyperbaric chamber for roughly an hour at a time.

Flounder was the Jupiter Pet Emergency & Specialty Center’s first turtle, but the move isn’t without precedent.

Hyperbaric treatments aided the loggerhead turtle Kahuna’s recovery two years ago. Kahuna had been bitten by a shark and infection followed. The antibiotics would appear to work, but when the flow of medicine stopped, the infection returned … until they tried the hyperbaric chamber.

“Ten treatments and the infection went away and never came back,” said Charles Manire, Marinelife Center’s director of research and rehabilitation. Kahuna was returned to the sea.

Greens, like loggerheads, live in tropical and subtropical coastal waters. They’re named not for their shells, which are brown, but for their greenish skin.

They can grow to up to 700 pounds, but Flounder is about the size of a hubcap. She was found near Daytona Beach, Fla., in April.

She was sick and her infection hasn’t responded well to antibiotics.

The hyperbaric chamber, which resembles an oversize water heater with submarine-like windows on its side and images of sea-critters on the outside, creates an oxygen-rich environment.

The increased pressure within drives that oxygen into Flounder’s body in a way simply breathing it can’t, said Dr. Frederico Lattimer at the Jupiter Pet Emergency Center.

Oxygen is the stuff of healing. And when it’s forced into her body in such quantities, it lingers in her system, releasing the healing element for hours.

Of course, first Flounder has had to wait her turn … sometimes in a line of household dogs and cats.

Flounder last week completed 10 treatments in five days.

Flounder is using her flipper a little more than before, Manire said. But he doesn’t expect to see real improvement, the kind that can be gauged on an X-ray, possibly for weeks.

“There’s no book written or even paper written on how to do this. We have to kind of make it up as we go or extrapolate from other animals,” Manire said. “It’s a trial and error sort of thing.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation World

Dad learns to walk again for his daughters' sake after doctors said he was paralyzed
Dad learns to walk again for his daughters' sake after doctors said he was paralyzed

Seven months after doctors told him he’d never be able to use his legs again, a man stood up and walked out of a rehabilitation center with his two young daughters at his side. Cole Thomas, of Rochelle, Illinois, told “Today” that he shattered a vertebra in a September 2016 car crash. “I realized I was hurt very badly,&rdquo...
Poor Will’s Clark County Almanack: Hummingbirds arrive!
Poor Will’s Clark County Almanack: Hummingbirds arrive!

Stay together, Learn the flowers, Go light. — Gary Snyder, from “For the Children” The Almanack Horoscope Moon Time: Mock Orange Moon waxes throughout the period, entering its second quarter at 9:42 p.m. on May 2. Rising in the morning and setting in the evening, this moon passes overhead in the afternoon. Sun Time: Late Spring is...
Disney workers ask company to fight for 500 Haitian refugees
Disney workers ask company to fight for 500 Haitian refugees

Union representatives speaking on behalf of 500 Haitian refugees working as Disney cast members in Central Florida are asking CEO Bob Iger to fight for them to stay in the U.S. The group is part of 50,000 refugees from the island nation who are living in the U.S. following the earthquake that ravaged the country in 2010. President Barack Obama gave...
Facebook Live video leads to suspect in woman's death
Facebook Live video leads to suspect in woman's death

A Facebook Live video led police to a suspect in the December 2016 death of a woman in a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, neighborhood.  Isaiah Booker, 23, of Homestead, was charged Tuesday with criminal homicide, criminal attempted homicide, aggravated assault and persons not to possess a firearm.  The charges stem from the shooting death of 25-year-old...
Opinion: The ESPN we used to enjoy is dead and never coming back
Opinion: The ESPN we used to enjoy is dead and never coming back

The worst thing that ever happened to ESPN was the success of PTI. Shortly after Pardon The Interruption debuted in October 2001, the network set about trying to replicate it on every other show on the network. That has proven to be a disaster because nobody in Bristol gets the debate isn’t what makes that show great, it’s the debaters...
More Stories