Target: Doctors Aamna Ali and David Cahill
Goal: Congratulate these doctors for overseeing the first successful gorilla birth by Caesarean section.
A newborn gorilla is the first of its kind born in the United Kingdom via Caesarian section. The infant belongs to a critically endangered species, the Western lowland gorilla, native to central Africa. Kera, the baby’s mother, was diagnosed with potentially fatal pre-eclampsia and deemed unable to safely give birth without surgical intervention. Doctors from a nearby maternity hospital, accustomed to working with human births and finding the baby unresponsive, decided to intervene. They performed the first successful C-section on a gorilla in the U.K., saving both animals’ lives.
Aamna Ali and David Cahill, the attending surgeons, had observed the gorillas for years, and were called to the zoo when Kera began experiencing problems with delivery. At the Bristol Zoo’s clinic, the two doctors diagnosed the mother with life-threatening pre-eclampsia, and operated to deliver the two pound ten ounce baby. Cahill, a top gynecologist who has delivered hundreds of human babies over his career, stated that bringing the gorilla into the world was “one of the biggest achievements” of his life.
Though C-sections have been performed on gorillas in the U.K. before, this is the first successful birth resulting from such a surgery. Since they are endangered, every gorilla birth is an exciting event; the uniqueness of this particular gorilla’s birth story makes it doubly thrilling. Praise these brave, skilled doctors for stepping in to operate on a highly unusual patient and making history with the first successful gorilla C-section performed in the UK.
Dear Dr. Ali and Dr. Cahill,
Congratulations on performing the first successful C-section surgery on a Western lowland gorilla in the United Kingdom. We thank you for taking a risk in order to save the life of Kera and her newborn daughter. Your skill and bravery in this difficult and highly unusual situation is commendable.
Though the birth of every endangered animal is an event to celebrate, the unique circumstances of this birth story make it even more inspiring. You have not only made medical history, you have forever changed the lives of a little gorilla family, and for that we celebrate you. Thank you for the impeccable care and respect you showed these amazing animals, and for using your talents to bring a new gorilla into the world.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: foto-horst