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Sentara scans injured sea turtles 

Sea turtles from the Sea Turtle Assistance and Rehabilitation (STAR) Center at the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island received CT scans at Sentara Albemarle Medical Center in Elizabeth City last month. 

Three turtles – a loggerhead who suffered from a head wound and two green sea turtles both diagnosed with cold-stunning – received the scans May 3 and May 17. 

“We are excited for the opportunity to assist in the great work of the North Carolina Aquarium,” said Heidi Ambrose, director of patient care services and director of diagnostic imaging at the medical center. “We love welcoming these unique patients to the hospital and providing a service that may help them get back to the wild after recovery.” 

Once the images are processed, NC Aquarium veterinarians are better able to develop a treatment plan specifically for the ailments these turtles present with.  This allows for a faster recovery time and overall better outlook for the sea turtles. 

“We are so fortunate to have an organization like Sentara available to provide this procedure,” said STAR Center manager Amber White. “The CT technology is a huge asset in the continued treatment of these turtles.”  

The aquarium’s STAR Center, operated in partnership with the Network for Endangered Sea Turtles (NEST), rehabilitates sick and injured sea turtles. The goal of the program is to rehabilitate then reintroduce the turtles back into the sea. The center currently houses 13 sea turtles from this winter’s cold stun season and has released dozens more back to the ocean. 

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