Cases reported "Snake Bites"

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1/8. Copperhead envenomations: clinical profiles of three different subspecies.

    Copperhead envenomation cases reported in the literature frequently lack identification of the subspecies of copperhead responsible for the envenomation. Whether subspecific identity would be useful in predicting possible different toxicity profiles may have clinical relevance. We report here the clinical profiles from envenomations involving 3 different subspecies of captive adult copperhead snakes--the southern copperhead (agkistrodon contortrix contortrix), the northern copperhead (agkistrodon contortrix mokasen), and the broad-banded copperhead (agkistrodon contortrix laticinctus). The bites occurred in the north-central region of the US where none of these subspecies are endemic and involved a professional and 2 amateur herpetologists. The victims were adult males with no previous history of venomous snake bite, and all bites were evidenced by fang puncture marks to their index finger or thumb. Envenomations from the broad-banded and northern copperhead subspecies caused localized symptoms of pain, edema and ecchymosis. In addition to these symptoms, southern copperhead envenomation resulted in a more severe clinical toxicity profile as evidenced by propulsive emesis, diarrhea and hematuria. Whether these differences in observed clinical toxicity were the result of unique subspecific venom pharmacological actions is an interesting question. However, independent of the copperhead subspecies involved, conservative medical management was effective in each case.
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2/8. Immediate hypersensitivity reaction associated with the rapid infusion of Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab (ovine).

    A 16-year-old boy presented to the emergency department with rapidly progressing extremity pain, edema, and ecchymosis after envenomation by a copperhead. Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab (ovine) (CroFab; FabAV) was infused. Six vials were placed in 250 mL of normal saline solution, and the infusion was gradually increased. Fifty minutes after beginning, the infusion was increased to 640 mL/h. Within minutes of the rate increase, the patient experienced full-body urticaria, facial edema, voice change, and tachycardia. The infusion was stopped. hydroxyzine pamoate, famotidine, methylprednisolone, and a 1-L bolus of normal saline solution were administered intravenously. The symptoms abated, and the remaining FabAV was infused at a slower rate without return of this reaction. This immediate hypersensitivity reaction was most likely a rate-related anaphylactoid reaction that has not been previously reported with FabAV.[Holstege CP, Wu J, Baer AB. Immediate hypersensitivity reaction associated with the rapid infusion of Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab (ovine). Ann Emerg Med. June 2002;39:677-679.]
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3/8. Copperhead envenomations in the Carolinas.

    INTRODUCTION: Although the copperhead (Akistrodon contortrix) is responsible for most Crotaline envenomations in the Carolinas, manifestations and treatment are poorly characterized. OBJECTIVE: We sought to describe the clinical course after copperhead bites. METHOD: Structured review of copperhead exposures reported to a regional poison center from 1997-2000. hospital records were reviewed when available. Phone followup was attempted. RESULTS: A total of 178 cases were identified. Of these 75% were males. The median age was 31 yr (range 2-93). The bite site included hand (52%), foot (36%), leg (7%), and arm (5%). classification included dry (7%), mild (48%), moderate (39%), and severe (6%). The most common symptom was pain (93%). Local findings included swelling (94%), fang marks (93%), ecchymosis (53%), erythema (37%), bullae (13%), and tissue necrosis (8%). Eleven of 37 patients developed abnormal PT and/or PTT. Two patients bled. patients were treated at a healthcare facility in 160 cases, with 79 patients admitted. Opioid analgesics were the most common therapy (81%). Equine-derived antivenin was given in 14 cases (range 2-30 vials). Antivenin reactions developed in three. Two patients received blood products. Surgical treatment included debridement (6), grafting (2), digit amputation (1), digit dermotomy (1), and fasciotomy (1). No patients died. In followup, 18 patients reported limb dysfunction ranging from 5-365 days. CONCLUSION: Copperhead bites typically result in mild to moderate envenomation due to local tissue effects. Significant systemic manifestations are rare. Limb dysfunction can be prolonged.
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4/8. Rattlesnake envenomation to the face of an infant.

    BACKGROUND: mortality from rattlesnake envenomation in the united states is rare. Despite approximately 8000 crotaline (pit vipers) bites annually, it is estimated that only 10 to 15 deaths occur. Besides direct intravascular envenomation and anaphylaxis, bites to the head and neck may account for some of these rare fatalities. We report a pediatric case of severe facial envenomation requiring emergent intubation and antivenom administration. CASE REPORT: A 14-month-old female toddler was envenomated by a Southern Pacific rattlesnake (crotalus viridis helleri) above the right upper lip while playing in her backyard. Rapid swelling and ecchymosis developed, and the patient was airlifted to a pediatric tertiary care hospital. Within 3 hours, stridorous respirations complicated by significant facial and oropharyngeal edema necessitated emergent orotracheal intubation. A total of 16 vials of FabAV [Crotalidae Polyvalent Immune Fab (ovine) antivenom] were administered over the next 24 hours. The child gradually improved and was successfully extubated 5 days later. A 3-month follow-up demonstrated no significant cosmetic facial abnormalities. CONCLUSION: Crotaline bites to the head and neck have the potential for significant swelling and airway compromise. Facial bites, anaphylaxis, and rare intravascular envenomation may account for many of the fatalities from rattlesnake envenomation. Early intubation may be required to maintain airway patency.
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5/8. Human envenomation from the bite of the eastern garter snake, Thamnophis s. sirtalis (Serpentes: colubridae).

    A 13-yr-old victim of a prolonged eastern garter snake (Thamnophis s. sirtalis) bite was hospitalized following development of coolness, edema and ecchymosis of the bitten hand. Although lymphatic involvement was noted, vital signs and laboratory tests were normal and rapid recovery followed. Subsequent asymptomatic Thamnophis bites of the subject indicate that these clinical changes were not allergic. This case from delaware suggests that widespread toxicity within the genus is likely.
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6/8. Envenomation by the northern blacktail rattlesnake (crotalus molossus molossus): report of two cases and the in vitro effects of the venom on fibrinolysis and platelet aggregation.

    In two cases of human envenomation by the northern blacktail rattlesnake (crotalus molossus molossus) there was marked swelling and ecchymosis of the bitten extremity and thrombocytopenia and, in one case, hypofibrinogenemia. Treatment consisted of i.v. antivenin, crystalloid solution, fresh frozen plasma and cryoprecipitates, with recovery in each case. in vitro studies showed that the venom had fibrinolytic and platelet aggregating properties; a coagulant effect, although present, was much less marked.
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7/8. Complications of Echis colorata snake bites in the Asir region of saudi arabia.

    Seven Saudi children bitten by Echis colorata, a species of carpet viper encountered mainly in the middle east, were studied in south-western saudi arabia. They all showed severe local signs of swelling, ecchymosis and blisters, and one also had local necrosis. Four children had systemic envenoming with vomiting and hypotension, and one child had acute renal failure. Three of them had prolonged prothrombin and partial thromboplastin times and hypofibrinogenaemia resulting from disseminated intravascular coagulopathy. They were initially managed in the intensive care unit and received intravenous fluids and polyvalent antivenom. Apart from one child who required skin grafting for local necrosis, complete recovery with no sequelae occurred in all cases.
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8/8. Human envenomation from a wandering garter snake.

    Garter snake bites are generally innocuous to human beings. We report a case of human envenomation from the Wandering Garter snake (Thamnophis elegans vagrans). The patient, who was bitten on his right third fingertip, rapidly developed local edema, ecchymosis, and hemorrhagic vesicles. Systemic signs and symptoms did not develop. The clinical picture was similar to that in three previous patients with Thamnophis envenomation in that clinical signs followed a prolonged bite. Thamnophis species have Duvernoy's glands, which may be analogous to venom glands in Crotalidae (pit viper) species. The progressive local effects produced by secretions of these glands may be confused with early Crotalidae envenomation.
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