Wono the Sea Lion has cataract surgery.

Posted on: November 16, 2011

Wono, a California sea lion residing at Dolphins Plus since 1992, began to lose her sight a little over a year ago.  The husbandry and training staff consulted with Dr. Carmen Colitz and her renowned surgical team.  It was determined that Wono was suffering from the onset of cataracts, a natural disorder affecting aging sea lions.  Two pre-surgical evaluations were performed to ensure her suitability for surgery.

A carefully designed training plan was implemented for a year prior to the surgery.  Dolphins Plus staff converted Wono’s dry resting area into a fully enclosed climate controlled recovery room.  The team slowly acclimated Wono to be comfortable spending increasing amounts of time in her enclosed dry resting area.  Dr. Colitz prescribed a three-week rehabilitation period where Wono would need to remain dry and cool.  This was done to reduce the  risk of postoperative ophthalmic infection.

On Saturday the 22nd of October, at 8:30 a.m., the surgical team sedated and anesthetized Wono.  Dr. Colitz felt the three and a half hour procedure was successful and without complications.  Wono was returned to her recovery room and removed from anesthesia.