BANGKOK — A Thai veterinarian says a 25-year-old sea turtle has slipped into a coma two weeks after it had life-saving surgery to remove 915 coins from its stomach.
The green sea turtle named Omsin, "piggy bank" in Thai, began having trouble swimming, being it swallowed 11 pounds of coins that tourists thew into the its pond to make a wish — something vets have urged the public to stop.
Veterinarian Nantarika Chansue removed the coins March 6 in an seven-hour operation March 7. But a checkup Saturday revealed problems with the turtle's intestines and doctors performed a second operation.
In a Facebook posting Monday, the veterinarian said Bank had not woken up since the operation and was in "very serious" condition.
"A turtle can live up to 80 years and the belief is that throwing coins into the turtle pond will make the coin thrower live longer," Rungroj Thanawongnuvej, Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Science at Chulalongkorn said in a statement.
The reptile has lived in the small public park for over 20 years in Chonburi Province.