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Rhinoceros CT Scan

In this April 23 photo provided by the Chicago Zoological Society, Dr. Sathya Chinnadurai, senior staff veterinarian for the Chicago Zoological Society, monitors Layla a 7½-year-old eastern black rhinoceros, as she receives a CT scan inside the Zoo's Pachyderm House in Brookfield.

BROOKFIELD — A rhinoceros at a suburban Chicago zoo has undergone what's believed to be the first CT scan performed on the species. It was no easy task.

Layla is seven and a half years old and 2,300 pounds and lives at Brookfield Zoo.

Zoo officials say the scan was needed to diagnose an obstruction in Layla's nasal passageway that made it difficult for her to breathe.

Because Layla was too large to move inside the zoo's hospital a CT scanner had to be brought to the Pachyderm House.

A front loader was needed to lift the rhino onto the surgical table. About 40 staff members helped with the process and did practice runs with 2,300 pounds of concrete.

The images revealed abnormal tissue near an upper molar. The zoo says Layla is resting comfortably and surgery is planned.

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