Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Poached rhino’s skin grafts a failure

Disappointing results from Thandi's skin grafts 
October 2013. Vets checking Thandi, the rhino that underwent a pioneering skin grafts after having her horn hacked off on Kariega Game Reserve, have found that the grafts have mostly been unsuccesful. The purpose of the checks was to evaluate if the skin grafts had worked, and which methods in particular had been successful. Although Thandi's behaviour and general health appear strong, the procedure revealed that the skin grafts were mostly unsuccessful. 

Very disappointed
Veterinary Doctor, William Fowlds, commented "The surgical team assessed her face after a good clean up we were very disappointed to find that she has removed most of the grafted tissues that were transplanted on the previous two occasions. Only 2 small islands of tissue remain over her front horn area and the exposed bed of granulation tissue is not as blood rich as we would have hoped. The back horn area is doing well but probably isn't subjected to as much pressure as what is clearly happening in the front." 

Thandi has undergone many surgeries and treatments since her horn was hacked off by poachers in March last year. 19 months after she was poached the Kariega team, Dr Fowlds, and surgical Doctors Johan Marais and Alistair Lamont gathered at Kariega in the hope that this would be her last procedure after a very long recovery period. 

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