Pinto the koala basking in the sun
Pinto the koala was left fighting his life after being hit by a car in a high-speed zone.
With blood on his face and a broken arm, Pinto was rushed to the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital, where the team confirmed he had sustained multiple breaks to his arm, a ruptured eye and internal bleeding.
Dr. Amber and her team began a number of surgeries to mend Pinto’s broken body. To repair the upper part of this arm, Dr. Amber inserted a series of surgical pins into the humerus (upper arm bone), which were then connected on the outside with surgical clamps to stabilise the fracture (called an external fixator). The other fracture in Pinto’s arm was stabilised with a soft cast which required bandaging his arm and part of his chest. Further surgery was performed 24 hours later to remove Pinto’s badly damaged eye as it was beyond repair.
Pinto has been a fighter from the start. Due to the extent of Pinto’s injuries, and the immobilisation of his fractured arm, he was restricted from climbing for the first part of his recovery and housed in an enclosure in the Mammals Intensive Care Unit. With intravenous fluids, strong pain relief and anti-inflammatories to assist his recovery, he was walking around in the ICU on his own and self-feeding within a couple of weeks.
Despite Pinto’s inspiring progress, his road to recovery has only just begun. Once his fractures have started healing he will begin physiotherapy to build the muscles in his arm and begin climbing again. His extensive rehabilitation means he will remain in care for at least eight months before he can return to the wild.
Pinto the koala in the arms of his vet nurse
Pinto the koala smiling at his doctor
Pinto the koala with his new green cast