Pet Goldfish Undergoes High Risk Brain Surgery



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George is not your average 10-year-old goldfish. As reported by the Harold Sun, while other fish were relaxing in their underwater castles, George was actually going under the knife for brain surgery—yes, you read the right. George the goldfish had a tumor removed from his brain that was half the size of his head!

The Washington Post said that Pip Joyce and Lyn Orton, George’s guardians, were given two options: either they put their beloved George down or pay for a life-saving, yet high risk, operation to remove the tumor. Orton and Joyce made the choice to save George. “They’re not just things in the water—they’re characters,” said Orton to Harold Sun reporter Andrea Hamblin. the pair didn’t hesitate to pay the $200 for the operation.

The operation, offered by Dr. Tristan Rich, a veterinarian at Lort Smith Animal Hospital, had been “quite fiddly,” said Dr. Rich. Because George is so small, if he had lost even .5 millimeters of blood, he could have died.

The Herald Sun went on to report that to prepare for the surgery, George was put into a water tank, mixed with enough anesthetic to safely knock him out. After being removed from the tank, a tube was attached to his mouth so the water and anesthetic could be flushed over his gills by the operating team. Dr. Rich recalls, “When it was all done we woke him up in a clean bucket of water—he came through it swimmingly.”

Since having the surgery, it looks like George could have as many as 20 more years to just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming! This is one tough goldfish!

If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian -- they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.

Reviewed on:

Tuesday, September 16, 2014


10-Year Old George The Goldfish Undergoes High Risk Brain Surgery

Life for George wasn’t as easy as being a goldfish. The 10-year old goldfish, apart from being bullied by fellow fishes was suffering from tumour that caused him immense pain in the head. On the 16 th of September 2014, George was in Australia undergoing a high risk brain surgery – an operation termed as “fiddly” by expert veterinarians. The owner of the goldfish had two options to treat the tumour protruding from George’s head – to have it operated or to have it put to sleep, permanently. The Melbourne-based owner decided to go for the surgery to save her goldfish pet.

Tristan Rich, the vet who carried the operation from the Lort Smith Animal Hospital stated that the owner was dedicated enough to give it a try. For the 30-minute procedure, George was knocked out with anaesthetic, and according to Tristan, George is recovering well back in his home pond. Tristan was quoted stating, “It was quite fiddly as you can imagine and you have to control any blood loss. You can only lose half a millilitre. Obviously it was high-risk but everything went well in the end.” Tristan also mentioned having done similar operations on goldfishes that had lived till they were 30 years old.

Tristan mentioned, “The owner was quite attached to him. Everyone forms bonds to pets in different ways and it is not up to us to distinguish between species.” The owner was so dedicated to George that she didn’t care about spending thrice as much as it would have cost her to just buy a new goldfish. According to some sources, the procedure involved setting up numerous buckets with different levels of anaesthetics. A tube was inserted in George’s mouth, which pumped sufficient amount of water with smaller dosage of anaesthetic. Using a medical tool, Tristan removed a large tumour from George’s head and also used a special medical sponge to control the bleeding.

After it was over, George’s head was closed with a few stitches or thread and tissue glue. Soon after the surgery, George was placed in the recovery unit, given oxygen, pain relief injections as well as antibiotics to help him recover soon. But soon after, the fish took a couple of breath and was back swimming in no time! Over the course of the year, the tumour had grown so much in size that George had a difficult time eating, getting around and was also being bullied by other fish in the pond.


George the goldfish has ‘high risk’ brain surgery

10-year-old fish undergoes 'high-risk procedure' to remove tumour from its head

A goldfish named 'George' lying on the operating table during an operation to remove a tumour in Melbourne. Image Credit: AFP

Sydney: A goldfish called George was on the mend in Australia Tuesday after undergoing “high risk” brain surgery in an operation the vet described as “fiddly”.

The 10-year-old fish had a tumour protruding from its head, leaving his owner with two options: to have it operated on or have the fish put to sleep.

The Melbourne-based owner opted for the delicate surgery.

“She was dedicated enough to give it a go,” the vet who performed the operation, Tristan Rich, told commercial radio station 3AW.

George was knocked out with anaesthetic for the 30 minute procedure and is now recovering well back in his home pond, Rich said.

“It was quite fiddly as you can imagine and you have to control any blood loss. You can only lose half a millilitre,” said Rich from the Lort Smith Animal Hospital.

“Obviously it was high risk but everything went well in the end.”

Rich said he knew of goldfish that had lived until they were 30 and he had performed similar operations before.

“The owner was quite attached to him,” he said.

“Everyone forms bonds to pets in different ways and it is not up to us to distinguish between species.”

Rich added that the operation cost “a few hundred dollars”. A new goldfish from a pet shop would cost less than Aus$10 (Dh33 or US$9).


Goldfish undergoes life-saving surgery to remove brain tumor

Life-saving goldfish surgery goes swimmingly well

Vet removes tumor from George the goldfish in Australia

A 10-year-old goldfish in Australia is recovering from life-saving surgery to remove a brain tumor, BBC News reported Tuesday.

George, whose owner lives in Melbourne, underwent the high-risk procedure after being placed in a bucket of ice water that contained anesthetic, according to the Lort Smith Animal Hospital’s Facebook page.

"George had a quite large tumor on the top of his head that was growing slowly, and it was beginning to affect his quality of life," said Dr. Tristan Rich, who performed the operation.

Rich fed a tube containing oxygenated pond water and anesthetic into George’s gills to keep him sedated and alive throughout the delicate procedure. The doctor then used tissue glue, a substance commonly used on human patients, when sutures would not hold George’s scaly covering.

Following the 45-minute operation, George was given antibiotics and painkillers and placed in a bucket of clean water for recovery. Rich told Melbourne’s 3AW radio station that the patient was “up and swimming around” on Monday.

Experts say the $200 procedure may have bought George another 20 years of life.


Pet Goldfish Undergoes High Risk Brain Surgery - pets

SYDNEY (AFP) - A goldfish named George was on the mend in Australia on Tuesday after undergoing "high-risk" brain surgery in an operation the vet described as "fiddly".

The 10-year-old fish had a tumour protruding from its head, leaving its owner with two options: to have it operated on or have the fish put to sleep. The Melbourne-based owner opted for the delicate surgery.

"She was dedicated enough to give it a go," the vet who performed the operation, Dr Tristan Rich, told commercial radio station 3AW.

George was knocked out with anaesthetic for the 30-minute procedure and is now recovering well back in his home pond, Dr Rich said. He said the whole operation was done using three buckets of water, with different levels of anaesthetic in the first two to knock the fish out and keep it under during the procedure.

"It was quite fiddly as you can imagine and you have to control any blood loss. You can only lose half a millilitre," said Dr Rich from the Lort Smith Animal Hospital.

"Obviously it was high-risk, but everything went well in the end."

Dr Rich said he knew of goldfish that had lived till they were 30 and he had performed similar operations before.

"The owner was quite attached to him," he said.

"Everyone forms bonds to pets in different ways and it is not up to us to distinguish between species."

Dr Rich added that the operation cost "a few hundred dollars". A new goldfish from a pet shop would cost less than A$10 (S$11.40).


Watch the video: Australian Goldfish Called George Undergoes Surgery To Save His Life


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