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Singapore. The penguins underwent cataract surgery and received artificial intraocular lenses

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Three king penguins in Singapore have had custom-made artificial lenses implanted during cataract surgery. Veterinarians there emphasize that this procedure has never been used in these animals before. The birds made a full recovery about three months after surgery, it was reported on Tuesday.

Six penguins living in Singapore’s Jurong Bird Park Zoo have lost their vision. They were diagnosed with cataracts, a disease that can lead to blurred vision and even blindness. It is related to age. “We noticed cloudiness in their lenses,” said veterinarian Ellen Rasidi of the Mandai Wildlife Group. She added that the birds “moved as if they had trouble seeing objects between themselves.”

Three king penguins in their 20s and three members of the Peruvian penguin, also known as the Humboldt penguin, aged 7 to 13, underwent cataract surgery in December.

Penguins with artificial lenses

King penguins, in addition to cataract removal, were implanted with artificial intraocular lenses. They were imported from Germany. Precise measurements were made beforehand to fit each bird’s eyes. It took two months to make the lenses.

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– The success of these operations is a milestone in veterinary medicine. While intraocular lenses are common in humans and some domestic mammals, they may have been used successfully in penguins for the first time, said Gladys Boo of The Eye Specialist for Animals Veterinary Clinic in Singapore. “King penguins, which are the larger species, have eyes large and stable enough to hold these custom lenses in place, so we decided to perform this world-first procedure to further improve their vision.”

One of the penguins during the operationMandai Wildlife Group

The penguins received artificial intraocular lenses made in GermanyMandai Wildlife Group

The penguins were implanted with artificial lensesMandai Wildlife Group

“Increase in reaction speed and activity level”

All six penguins have made a full recovery, the zoo said on Tuesday. Caregivers noted “increases in reaction speed and activity levels”.

‘It’s nice to see them more active, which indicates improved vision and, in the case of king penguins, successful adaptation to the new lenses,’ said Rasidi.

The penguins were kept out of water and separated from the rest of the herd while they were recovering. They were given eye drops twice a day.

One of the king penguins after surgeryMandai Wildlife Group

The penguins were given eye dropsMandai Wildlife Group

CNN, Insider, mandai.com, tvnmeteo.pl

Main photo source: Mandai Wildlife Group

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