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#120729 - 01/18/08 10:47 PM Immediate action for a snake bite?
Taurus Offline
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Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 423
Loc: Ontario
As a Canadian, I don’t often worry about snakes as I tromp through my Countries backyard. There is only one type of poisonous snake in Canada. I am told it is a “diet” snake as it does not pack half the venom (or calories, .....ha ha ) of most snakes in the U.S. or elsewhere. In all my travels while hunting and the like while in Canada I have never come across any of these poisonous snakes, I have only seen the harmless garden type, so I am not very concerned about it here. As I will be heading back overseas soon I began once again to consider such things as snakes, Camel spiders and scorpions in my survival training. I only know of one Soldier bitten by a snake on my last tour. I don’t know what kind of snake it was but he ended up getting airlifted back to a field hospital because of it. I have started reading about this topic because I want to know how to self treat as best as possible if I am bitten and help is not at hand. After reading a few articles I have become very confused. confused Although all well written they ALL contradict each other constantly. One tells you that you should suck out the venom, the other tells you not to. One tells you to lance the wound with a scalpel and the other advises against it. One speaks about applying a tourniquet above the bite and the other forbids it altogether. I am obviously missing something as I can draw no common ground to link them all together as to what is the best course of action should I become bitten. Our Medics are among the best in uniform and I trust them fully, but I am not sure if they carry snake bite kits or not. As well, there are times when the Medics are unavailable. I plan to buy another snake bite kit of my own (on my last tour I had a Coghlan’s kit but was later told they may be inferior). If I am away from help and I (or a friend) get’s bitten by a poisonous snake, what should I do?? Keep in mind that this will be a tactical operation where some rules will not apply. I know eventually you will need professional help but it may take several hours or longer for that to be possible. As well, staying put and resting may not be a option depending on the situation. I know a lot of you here on this forum live in places where you deal with poisonous snakes on a daily basis.

Any advice would be appreciated. smile Thanks.

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#120732 - 01/18/08 11:06 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
OldBaldGuy Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
I would go with the Sawyer kit.

Link . Scroll down to Bites and Stings...
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#120736 - 01/18/08 11:44 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: OldBaldGuy]
Hacksaw
Unregistered


Originally Posted By: OldBaldGuy
I would go with the Sawyer kit.

Link . Scroll down to Bites and Stings...


I have one and I've never needed to use it but it's a very well constructed kit and the suction that the little pump can produce is amazing.

I never considered something like this until my dad found out he's deathly allergic to insect stings.

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#120738 - 01/19/08 12:08 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
sicily02 Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/13/07
Posts: 35
Taurus carry some activaited charcoal in a small water proof container with you always while over there. you can get it from a heatlh food store. If you are bitten take out your charcaol
mix with water to make a paste and put it on your bite area several inchs around the bite area. now wrap that up with a bandage. This is a pultice and is very effective in drawing out
poison. If you get a sawyer extractor great. then put the pultice on after you have sucked as much poison out that you can.
If you do not have the sawyer extractor then us the charcaol.
I have never been bitten by a poisonois snake but I did carry this over there in the event this would happen When I was in the Marines in the first gulf war. My family has used this for many
yeas for stings, rashes, and even take it for upset tummies with great success. I still carry and use it to this day. Remember that your chemical suit has it in there too to help keep you safe during a chemical attack. Activaited Charcoal is awsome stuff.
Take care and stay safe over there,
Bryan

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#120739 - 01/19/08 12:08 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: ]
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
The Sawyer kit is splendid for insect bites. It's efficacy with snakebites is unproven and subject to debate. All of the Cutter type 'cut and suck' kits are utterly useless and cause more harm. If you apply a tourniquet to a limb you will lose it. Your best aid is to study the venemous sankes and insects and understand their habits and how each toxin works ; neuro, muscular etc. There is only one agreed upon course of action; First, remain calm. Second evacuate to a proper medical facility asap.

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#120740 - 01/19/08 12:25 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
sicily02 Offline
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Registered: 02/13/07
Posts: 35
I noticed Chris put in that to get medical help as soon as you can. I ment to say that too but after you have appleid the pultice. I can not stress that enough. A pultice does help and is better than the ace bandage stuff and most of the other stuff out there being said like Chris said Yes do remain calm too.
Also you might not be able to get medical help right a way. So use the pultice untill you can be seen by a doctor. Things happen to where the top brass will tell you we can get you out of trouble in 15 minutes Bull it may take six hours before they can come and get you untill then you are on your own. It sucks but it does happen. personal experience it was not a snake bite but gunshot wound not me another guy I can still hear his crying to this day while in first gulf war. GET THE CHARCOAL.
Bryan

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#120742 - 01/19/08 01:05 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: sicily02]
sodak Offline
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Registered: 03/20/05
Posts: 410
Sawyer Extractor is a very good kit, I would follow it up with the charcoal, and then, since you're Canadian, some Yukon Jack. It helps you to remain calm! laugh

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#120743 - 01/19/08 01:07 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: sicily02]
NAro Offline
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Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 470
Brian, can you link to or reference any authority to support the use of any poultice (charcoal or other..)for snake envenomation? I can't find any authority that thinks any poultice will "draw out" snake venom... but I'm open to guidance.

I found this excerpt from the Navy Operational Medical Lessons Learned Center interesting:
- - There have been no U.S. Military deaths due to snakebite over the last six years, according to the DOD Mortality Register, which contains detailed cause and manner of death of all U.S. active duty personnel since 1998.
- - There have been no reported U.S. Military deaths due to snakebite since 1978, as indicated by the AFIP mortality files, which contain “unusual cases” and all autopsies performed by Armed Forces Medical Examiner – approximately 1/3 of all active duty deaths.
- - From 1994 to 2003, four U.S. active duty personnel (two Air Force, two Marine Corps) were admitted to U.S. Military medial treatment facilities (MTF) for snakebite (ICD-9 Code: 905.0), as determined by a review of the DOD Medical Surveillance System.
These stats. are 3 years old, but interesting.

I also found this from the Alabama 4th Sustainment Brigade Medical Information Officer...from Operation Iraqi Freedom July 7, 2006
How NOT to Treat Snakebites:
Though U.S. medical professionals may not agree on
every aspect of what to do for snakebite first aid, they are
nearly unanimous in their views of what not to do. Among
their recommendations:
No ice or any other type of cooling on the bite.
Research has shown this to be potentially harmful.
No tourniquets. This cuts blood flow
completely and may result in loss of the affected
limb.
No electric shock. This method is under study
and has yet to be proven effective. It could harm the
victim.
No incisions in the wound. Such measures
have not been proven useful and may cause further
injury.


And, this may be of interest: VENOMOUS SNAKES OF IRAQ / SNAKEBITE FIELD MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS
http://www.rci-enr.net/neo-slither/articles/iraq.pdf


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#120753 - 01/19/08 01:47 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: NAro]
OldBaldGuy Offline
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Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
"...can you link to or reference any authority to support the use of any poultice (charcoal or other..)for snake envenomation.."

I can not speak from experience about a snake bite (but I did come VERY close one time), however I can about a bite from another critter (don' know what). One day I received a bite from something on my forearm. In no time at all red lines started working their way uphill from the bite (as in toward my heart). I applied a poultice of cold water and baking soda, within about a hour the lines started to go back down, and within about four hours there was no evidence of a bite at all, other than a little red dot. Worked for me...
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#120772 - 01/19/08 04:14 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
sicily02 Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/13/07
Posts: 35
NAro I used to have a book for the uses of charcoal. My mom might still have one I will see her Saturday. But for right now
check at your local heath food store. A place called black hills instute in south dakata uses charcoal with great succes my mom went there and learned more ways to use it. Pultices just have a drawing effect on on wounds I have used the for all kinds of stuff. Bee stings, cuts that have become infected, tummy ackes,
sider bites, even the reclusa bites have very good reaction with charcoal. I know a guy down in arkansas who has been using it for over 60 years he is a doctor. The stories he tells of people
being helped with useing charcoal pultices is amazing. Look up the Ellen White foundation She died in 1915 but she writes of using charcoal with great sucess. The famous Dr. Kellog of the early 1900s use to convers with her on medical probelms. Ellen had only a third grade education yet wrote many books on heath.
She also traved the world as a missonary her stories are awsome reading. A place called uchy pines I may have spelled that wrong. In the past I have ordered charcaol from them. I have used the commom broad leaf plantain with spctacular results as a pultice for stings,infected cuts, and bites besides drinking it as tea sweetened with honey. Charcoal used as a pultice on areas of welling is unbleiveable I watched my mom use it on a swollen ankle with great results. The chemical suits in the first gulf war were inpregnated with charcoal as a means of defense against chemical weapons. I remember putting on my suite and when I took it off had charcoal powder on me. It is used in nuclear waste confinement I have heard. In California at a place called weimer medical missionarry collage they use it there and show people how to use it for treating cases of skin problems and tummy ackes,bites,cuts, and stings. Charcoal is also great at taking bad taste out of water and for cleaning water to make it safe to drink. I have personly used it for that. Some water purifiers have charcoal in there products.
Hope this helps,
Bryan











Edited by sicily02 (01/19/08 04:14 AM)

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#120784 - 01/19/08 06:20 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: sicily02]
Susan Offline
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Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
I have to agree with Chris. Keep calm, don't go running in panic, get to medical help ASAP. No booze, no cutting, no tourniquet.

If putting a charcoal poultice on the bite will calm you down, I guess it wouldn't hurt.

Snake venom usually travels via the lymph system, and it will probably start moving quite soon after the bite. I doubt that a poultice is going to draw out anything that is already out of its reach.

Don't suck it by mouth, as the old manuals used to advise. If you have any kind of cut or abrasion inside your mouth and you get venom in/on it, it would be the same as the snake biting you there. The farther away the bite is from your head and heart, the better. Don't beg for trouble.

I believe there are two or three (at least) types of venom, and they affect your body differently.

Here is an interesting article aimed at the military on venomous snakes in Iraq (some photos) and how the venom affects your body, by a zoologist: http://www.curator.org/legacyvmnh/Whatsnew/venomous_snakes_of_iraq.htm

Sue




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#120789 - 01/19/08 12:20 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Susan]
jshannon Offline
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Registered: 02/02/03
Posts: 575
Loc: North Texas
Wilderness Snakebite Protocol

1. Scene safety
2. Take photo of snake from 6 feet away if possible
3. Keep victim calm
4. Remove constricting clothing and jewelry
5. Cleanse wound and apply sterile dressing
6. Splint body part as if fractured, in neutral position
7. Maintain hydration and monitor swelling; use pen to mark and time the border of advancing edema often enough to gauge progression
8. DO NOT give aspirin or NSAIDS for pain control
9. Evacuate: if close to trailhead and minor symptoms, slowly walk out; if hours from trailhead or severe symptoms, keep victim at rest with body part at or below level of heart, fill out incident report form and send someone for help


Edited by jshannon (01/21/08 04:12 AM)

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#120820 - 01/19/08 08:29 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: NAro]
xbanker Offline
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Registered: 04/21/05
Posts: 484
Loc: Anthem, AZ USA
This link doesn't offer any scientific support for the use of charcoal remedies specifically for snakebites (scroll ~3/4 down for How Can Charcoal Be Used On Snakebites?) but does describe a variety of acknowledged uses. Seems like an often overlooked item that would be worthwhile to include in a first aid kit.

This might be the book Bryan was referring to (endorsed by the co-founder of the Uchee Pines Institute, who's also a medical examiner in GA)

_________________________
"Things that have never happened before happen all the time." — Scott Sagan, The Limits of Safety

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#120827 - 01/19/08 09:33 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: xbanker]
NAro Offline
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Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 470
I guess I'm being too rigid here, but for possibly venomous snakebite I'll stick to the current best medical recommendations supported by current medical science. It's too important (for me) to resort to homeopathic or folk remedies unless there is some serious science behind them. Looking at the citations in these references, I remain unconvinced:

Charcoal Remedies by John Dinsley:
How Can Charcoal Be Used On Snakebites?
For snakebites, charcoal adsorbs the hemolytic substance of the snake venoms (one that destroys red blood cells). Only about 25% of poisonous snakes bites are venomous. Swelling begins within 10 minutes. If swelling occurs then venom has entered the body. Immediately after a bite submerge the area in cool charcoal water for about 30 minutes to one hour, with one half cup of charcoal to about two gallons of water. Cover the area with a large charcoal poultice and change every 10-15 minutes until swelling and pain are gone. Take charcoal by mouth as well. Take about 2 large tablespoons in a half glass of water every 2 hours for 3 doses. Take one small spoonful every 4 hours for the next 24 hours. Each charcoal dose should be followed by 2 glasses of water.

This remedy should work fine in 75% of snakebites. Otherwise, someone please educate me - how does topical charcoal (in the soak, or in the poultice) catch up with and "neutralize" venom in the lymphatic or venous system. I can't figure it out. And then... how was orally ingested charcoal survive digestion and then overtake the venom in the lymphatic or venous system. Perhaps one of our MD or Paramedic ETS'ers can help me understand this.

And while you're at it... from the same book:
How Is Charcoal Used For Viruses?
The sheep pox and foot and mouth virus and the anthrax virus are adsorbed by charcoal.


How does charcoal get to the intracellular virus? Assuming the authors really meant "adsorb" and not "absorb"..."Absorb" refers to a situation where something is taken into a medium, and disappears as a consequence (from?). "Adsorb" refers to a situation where something gets stuck onto (to?) the surface of a medium. I guess if I suspected a surface was contaminated with anthrax I wouldn't balk at dusting it with activated charcoal. But the next time I get anthrax I'll probably opt for more traditional approaches.

I admit I'm being sarcastic... and I'm not trying to "dis" anyone here. But (back on the point of the thread) in a survival situation I'm going to start with actions having a high probability of success...then probably will devolve down the probability chain even to the point of trying almost anything. I consider the above remedies in life-threatening situations to be the later, not the former. But YMMV.

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#120830 - 01/19/08 09:58 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: NAro]
xbanker Offline
Addict

Registered: 04/21/05
Posts: 484
Loc: Anthem, AZ USA
Originally Posted By: NAro
...for possibly venomous snakebite I'll stick to the current best medical recommendations supported by current medical science...

Couldn't agree more. I mention inclusion in a first aid kit for its versatility treating less-serious afflictions.

On topic, the link Susan provided has some interesting info. Wonder how problematic it is that the antivenom supplier for Iraq's venomous species is the Inst. d’Etat des Serums et Vaccines Razi in Tehran, Iran.

_________________________
"Things that have never happened before happen all the time." — Scott Sagan, The Limits of Safety

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#120834 - 01/19/08 10:11 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
sicily02 Offline
Newbie

Registered: 02/13/07
Posts: 35
Yes that looks like that is one of the books.
Thanks
Bryan

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#120859 - 01/20/08 03:10 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: sicily02]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 5642
Loc: southern Cal
The Black Hills Institute in Hill City, South Dakota is a really fine paleontological institution, but I doubt they are a medical authority on treatment of snakebite. This poultice jazz is news to me. It probably "works" like so many snakebite cures - the victim survives both the bite and the cure as well. Most snakebites, even untreated, are not fatal; many snakes do not even inject venom, for a variety of reasons.

The most recent Red cross manual that I have seen does away with "cut and suck." I believe a restricting band, not a tourniquet!!, is recommended, but the definitive treatment requires a medical facility and lowered activity before you get there.

Note how heavy the toll of snakebites has been in recent years in the Armed Forces. You have thousands of more significant hazards facing you than snakes.

Cultivate good preventive habits and learn to walk with caution through brush and don't stick your hands in places you can't see clearly.

Year in and year out, honeybees kill more people than snakebite, by far. And if you are in danger of bee induced anaphylactic shock, a Sawyer kit is useless - you need an epinephrine injection. The kit should be with you at all times.
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#120870 - 01/20/08 01:59 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: hikermor]
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
"...an epinephrine injection. The kit should be with you at all times. .."

Good point. I have been stung by a jillion bees, never had a reaction. But I have seen others stung and head into anaphylactic shock, and that is not a fun way to go. So I had my dr write me a prescription, and have the sting kit handy at all times. I can not legally inject another person, but depending on the conditions I might chance it. Maybe...
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#120872 - 01/20/08 02:59 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: jshannon]
Roarmeister Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 09/12/01
Posts: 835
Loc: Saskatchewan, Canada
Originally Posted By: jshannon
Wilderness Snakebite Protocol

1. Scene safety
2. Take photo of snake from 6 feet away if possible
3. Keep victim calm
4. Remove constricting clothing and jewelry
5. Cleanse wound and apply sterile dressing
6. Splint body part as if fractured, in neutral position
7. Maintain hydration and monitor swelling
8. DO NOT give aspirin or NSAIDS for pain control
9. Evacuate: if close to trailhead and minor symptoms, slowly walk out; if hours from trailhead or severe symptoms, keep victim at rest with body part at or below level of heart, fill out incident report form and send someone for help


I heartily agree with the above. It also matches my WFR training. What most people don't think about is the identification of the snake - if it is a common rattlesnake the venom will be painful but probably not life threatening but if you were bit by one of the many deadlier snakes, it's ID would be crucial to administering the correct anti-venom when you get to primary care. From what I understand, anti-venom is stored in a freeze dried form and reconstituted for immediate single shot use. It is usually species specific but there are some polyvalent types of anti-venom as well. (Please correct me if I'm wrong).

Something that I picked up from the Google video by Robert Nielson is that immature snake MAY inject you with more venom than an adult because they haven't yet got the ability to moderate the amount. A snake ID picture may also help you in identifying that potential.

FWIW, I think some spiders like the brown recluse are much more deadly than a typical rattlesnake but then I've never been bitten by either.

[Ever watch Snakes on a Plane? There are SO MANY things wrong with that show, I don't know where to begin... BUT it is hilarious entertainment!]

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#120897 - 01/20/08 09:55 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
philip Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/19/05
Posts: 639
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
See the FDA's page:
http://www.fda.gov/Fdac/features/995_snakes.html

What not to do, according to the page:
No incisions in the wound
No tourniquets
No ice or other cooling of the wound.

The page has information on what to do till quick help arrives and what to do if you can't get help for hours.

One expert says,
Quote:
"In the past five or 10 years, there's been a backing off in first aid from really invasive things like making incisions," says Arizona physician David Hardy, M.D., who studies snakebite epidemiology. "This is because we now know these things can do harm and we don't know if they really change the outcome."

So you may be seeing out of date advice regarding tourniquets (now uniformly rejected in all sorts of wounds), incisions, and sucking.

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#120919 - 01/21/08 01:12 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: philip]
Taurus Offline
Addict

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 423
Loc: Ontario
For those who took the time to reply to this thanks a lot, the info has been a great help. It seems that there is still a lot of debate on the subject though. I will keep searching to see what I can did up……….

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#120930 - 01/21/08 03:11 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
PeterR Offline
Newbie

Registered: 05/31/01
Posts: 47
Loc: Wollongong [ 34.25S 150.52E ] ...
Warning: You can get seriously hooked on the whole subject of snakes if you aren't careful...

Here in Australia we just live among 'em, and for the most part we leave each other alone. But we humans give 'em the respect they deserve; some of the most poisonous critters in the world. Here's a site which provides commonsense advice on the whole awesome collection of Aussie snakes.

The first aid principles would apply elsewhere.

http://www.usyd.edu.au/anaes/venom/snakebite.html#small

Take a look at the 'Fierce Snake', which I am told has the most venomous bite, drop for drop of any creature that crawls on God's earth. That's because it inhabits a tiny part of the Australian desert and eats just once a year when a native mouse scuttles past. The venom has to work, or the snake dies.

Far more common is the brown snake which lives where humans live, and if it had longer fangs, would easily account for the most deaths and serious injuries.
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#120933 - 01/21/08 03:59 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: PeterR]
jshannon Offline
Addict

Registered: 02/02/03
Posts: 575
Loc: North Texas
In the US, pressure immobolization is recommended for certain coral snake bites. It is not recommended for pit viper bites since it could increase local necrosis or compartment pressure. Because treatment measures may differ from snake to snake, identification is important.

http://www.healthline.com/blogs/outdoor_health/2007/10/myths-to-debunk.html

1. Myth- Mechanical suction, electric shock, and immersion in ice water are effective first aid (“field”) therapies for snakebite. In truth, these are not only not helpful, they may be quite harmful. Antivenom therapy is the only therapy that has been proven effective, with the possible exception of pressure immobilization for certain elapid (e.g., coral) snake bites.


Edited by jshannon (01/21/08 09:08 PM)

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#121093 - 01/22/08 07:30 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Roarmeister]
Susan Offline
Geezer

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 5163
Loc: W. WA
Re: Wilderness Snakebite Protocol, #6: Splint body part as if fractured, in neutral position.

Could anyone enlighten me a bit on this? I know pit viper venom tends to cause gross swelling, so would a fracture-type splint be of value here, or would it tend to cause more problems? On the snakebites I've seen, splinting or binding would have been contra-indicated (I would think) as the swelling would start squeezing against the splint supports. A sling type of support (for an arm or hand) I could understand, but I would question a rigid splint.

I suppose constant monitoring could prevent more damage, but how much would a non-professional know about that in an emergency situation? There is a wide difference between what an on-site doctor would do and what an average person would do.

Sue

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#121587 - 01/27/08 08:25 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Taurus]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
Hey Taurus, there is no agreement between medical personel as to what works with snake bite, and there never will be so long as the people who spout off their "expert" opinion have no experience with the things that they condemn.

There are several things that work to certain degrees and as chris says there are things that work in a real bad way, possibly causing much damage. Poultices work period, to draw out venom, for infections and they work for poisoning and stings. Before the days of doctors being representatives of the drug companies their use was widespread and they do work. For snake bite they would work slowly though and you would need to have a large poultice to have it draw out sufficient poison. I can't explain the mechanism as to how it works or how deep it works, but from my personal experience and those of our ancestors it is at the very least a backup treatment, it also can't hurt.

The most effective first-aid method, which I know from personal experience works, is a High Voltage Direct Current Electric shock (20kv), like from a small petrol engine spark system.

Just as doctors say not to suck out the venom, they also often say that people should not use electric shock. They say that sufficient testing has not been done to prove it's effectiveness. The doctors who write that have never used it to treat any bite or sting on a person. Over 1000 people have been treated in Ecuador in a government endorsed program in a hospital there and they have had no deaths since the program started. Before they were losing 5% of the victims. The morbidity (loss of tissue etc) went from 20% to 1%. This program took place from the mid eighties and continues to this day.

There are quite a few doctors around the world that use this form of first aid and also missionaries who have used it because they found that it worked.

Further reading on the subject can be found at
First Aid Venom Shock Wiki Site
That is a site that I help administer, although poorly at this time, it needs to be cleaned up and reorganised a bit, but what can I guy do when he is getting ready for a wedding? There is quite a bit of information on it though and it is well worth a browse. I know the guy personally who initiated the study in Ecuador, Dr. Ron Guderian. and I also know from personal experience that it works for bites and stings.

I have also designed a mechanical device for the third world that can be wound up and will deliver a shock to the site of the bite. This is not something that I am getting money from, I do it because I have found personally that it works and there was no other device out there that would work in the third world without batteries.


Menonite friends of mine have used cattle prods (8kv approx) for copperhead and rattle snake bites as well as brown recluse spider bites, with great success. These were not dry bites either. People have also found it effective for preventing anaphalactic shock due to stings as well.

There is a topic on this forum about the subject that goes into it in more detail.
Snake Bite, Insect Bite and Stings

This is a device that is made by some people in Italy that is a low powered stun gun that they claim works, although I have had no experience with it.
Technimed - Ecosave

There is also a low powered stun gun (25KV) that is made by a guy out west (Oaklahoma)I can put you in touch with him if you want. It is important to not to use a stungun or HVDC source that is too high in voltage. If the voltage is too high (in excess of 100KV) you can possibly get some tissue damage from the shock. This is not a problem if an appropriate voltage source is used.

I wish you all the best in your research,

Cheers,
Mac.


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#121782 - 01/28/08 09:11 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
I'd be very skeptical about this. The "explanation" proffered is that human tissue carries a negative electrical charge, snake venom carries a positive charge, and the two attract; application of electrical shock reverses the charge on the human tissue and repels the snake venom. I don't believe I've ever heard that human tissue carries an electrical charge, or snake venom either. Even if the theory were true, applying electrical shock to the area around the bite would then, logically, push the venom deeper into the body, causing more harm than good.

According to a BBC article online:

Electric shock therapy has also been found to be ineffective at neutralising the effect of venom, despite its widespread use in Africa and South America.
(http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4498779.stm)

I thought this one was a "Darwin award" urban myth, but apparently it really happened:

Dart and Gustafson described in detail the case of a 28-year-old man who was bitten near his right upper lip by his pet Great Basin rattlesnake (Crotalus viridis lutosus). The patient had been previously bitten 14 times. During treatment for 1 of these 14 bites, the patient had experienced an anaphylactic reaction to antivenom. On the basis of information they had read in an outdoorsman's magazine, the patient and his neighbor developed a plan to use HVDC shock treatment in case the patient was bitten again. The patient and his neighbor were provided with the opportunity to test their plan after the patient's 15th rattlesnake bite. The snakebitten patient was placed on the ground close to the car. The HVDC shock was delivered by attaching a lead wire from one of the car's spark plug wires to the patient's lip. The neighbor then started the car and revved the engine to 3000 revolutions per minute repeatedly for approximately 5 minutes. The patient reportedly lost consciousness during the first HVDC shock treatment. The ambulance crew, who arrived about 15 minutes later, found that the patient was unconscious and had fecal incontinence. On the basis of the ambulance crew's initial evaluation of the patient's unstable vital signs, he was transported to a hospital by helicopter. The patient arrived at the hospital approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes after the bite. In the emergency department, the patient was found to be obtunded, hypotensive (blood pressure 62/palpable mm Hg), tachycardic (pulse rate 120 beats/min) and hypothermic (35.4°C). The patient experienced severe face and neck swelling that necessitated nasotracheal intubation. After fluid resuscitation therapy, the patient regained consciousness and vital signs stabilized. Laboratory testing revealed moderate coagulopathy (protime 20 seconds) and thrombocytopenia (<40000 mm3) that resulted in the administration of 10 units of platelets. The patient exhibited a positive skin test reaction to Crotalidae polyvalent antivenom and received hydrocortisone 200 mg, diphenhydramine 100 mg, and cefazolin 1 gm intravenously as antivenom pretreatment. During the following 8 hours, the patient received 27 vials of antivenom. The patient was discharged after a bout of serum sickness with residual facial edema and loss of facial tissue, which ultimately required surgery. (36. Dart RC, Gustafson RA. Failure of electric shock treatment for rattlesnake envenomation. Ann Emer Med. 1991;20:659–661. Cited by Wilderness Medical Society:
(http://www.wemjournal.org/pdfserv/i1080-6032-012-02-0111.pdf )

The authors of the article, following a review of the available medical literature, concluded "that the use of stun guns or other
sources of high voltage, low amperage direct current electric shocks to treat venomous bites and stings is not supported by the literature."

_________________________
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#121799 - 01/28/08 10:30 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: aardwolfe]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
Hey Aardwolfe, You have misunderstood the theory about the action of the electrical charge on the venom. The tissue is not affected at all, it is the venom that is changed in it's molecular structure and the ionic charge that is modified by the shock. A recent study in Italy found that electric shock inactivated the Phospholipase A2 and Metalloproteinase molecules which are aparently the cause of pain and damage in snake venom.

Now on to the darwin award winner. I am somewhat familiar with the case of the guy that you mention. That guy was a nut, he used excessively high voltage, pulsed at too high a frequency (3000 rpm on the car... I shake my head in disbelief) and he hard wired himself to the vehicle for 5 minutes. So he didn't treat himself as the program in Ecuador treated people, so it is very difficult to compare the two. There is no way to determine what damage was done by the extreme misuse of the electricity, there was tissue damage and systemic shock from the electricity and he was rendered unconscious by using inappropriate shock. We can't determine if the venom was deactivated by the misadministered shock or not. The administration of the anitvenom was routine when there was a mild lack of clotting of the blood. There should have been severe lack of clotting of the blood if the venom had been largely untouched by the shock. He had major complications to the antivenom which is rather a common occurrence.

All In all, there is not any way that anyone can draw significant conclusions about the effectiveness of properly administered HVDC shock on snake venom from this case. It is quoted popularly because it is sensational and that is all.

So we have one guy here where we aren't sure what happened or didn't, and we have 1000+ people in Ecuador alone who are alive because of the Appropriate and Effective use of HVDC first aid. It is a bit one sided. Not to mention the people who I know who have used it for snake venom, bee stings and spider bite.... with great success. I have correspondance with people who are very allergic to stings and after using appropriate devices the pain and swelling went down and no allergic shock occurred. Also the missionaries who use this type of thing don't like to shock people, they use it because it works against the venom which they have no other way of treating. It is only in the west where we have doctors who administer antivenom worth 25,000 USD per bite incident where it is claimed it doesn't work and where most won't try it. Those who do try it find that it works, and use it, it's as simple as that. Doctors Stan Abrams, Carl Osbourne, Ron Guderian to name three in the US have tried it and found it effective against snake bite and other bites and stings too.

The BBC article really doesn't say anything significant, it is just parroting off what most doctors say who haven't tried it. These are the same doctors who can't agree about use of extractors or pressure bandages etc.

Most of the literature that the "researchers" quote on this very obscure subject is either misleading or downright false. There is a need to have effective and credible research done on this subject, and at this point it hasn't been done because it is verrrry expensive and most research in US medicine is paid for by very large pharmecutical companies. Individual doctors cannot afford to foot the bill, and it can't be done credibly in a garage.

There are lots of airheaded medical people on the web who parrot off what other inexperienced people have written on the subject saying that it either doesn't work or there isn't enough evidence and so just don't do it. I agree that there should be much more research done in an appropriate manner with an open mind. But I disagree that there is not enough evidence to show that it is effective, I know differently.

Cheers,
Mac.



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#121808 - 01/28/08 10:56 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: ]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
You are right, for a proof of concept and that it actually does something, that is all that you would have to do. That is exactly what they did in the Italian study last november. They took some tissue, injected venom into it and then shocked it with probes in the tissue 1cm down. This study found that the state of the venom was in fact modified by the electricity and that the modified venom molecules were not able to do damage.

Mac.

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#121810 - 01/28/08 11:17 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: ]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
I can't wait until some good solid scientific research can be done. We will have to see what happens. The high powered stun guns out there are between 400KV and 900KV which can cause electrical burns. So I would only use one of those if I couldn't find a small engine handy.

Experience has shown that the sooner you shock it the better it works and the less damage there is from the action of the venom; within 30 minutes is ideal, 15 is better. Sometimes several shocks are needed to fully nutralize the venom, 6 to 8 shocks across the bite site. The protocol is covered on the wiki site.

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#121811 - 01/28/08 11:23 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
Arney Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/15/05
Posts: 2485
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Macgyver
I have also designed a mechanical device for the third world...

Macgyver, that's a nifty HVDC device there. Looks promising. I hope it's doing some good.

For what it's worth, I read some scientific articles that Macgyver sent to me a while back. As I commented in that other thread, while I can't say that "right" kind of research has been done yet to convince a skeptical medical community, there seems to be more than enough cases with favorable outcomes to say that there's at least something very promising to this treatment.

It's probably going to take a while before a "respectable" researcher can actually do a human snakebite experiment using HVDC. I don't think that there's enough favorable laboratory and animal experiments done yet to make people feel comfortable doing something in humans yet. Well, maybe it could be done in the Third World where antivenin or even medical care may not be available so the ethical situation is different than trying it here, but then the medical community here is always skeptical of research that isn't done in First World countries.

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#121879 - 01/29/08 02:59 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
Do you have a citation for the Italian study? I'd be interested in reading it (although my area of academia is math and computer science, not medicine).

I'm prepared to be open-minded about it, and your explanation certainly sounds plausible, but the fact that 3 doctors in the US swear by it isn't particularly convincing to me, without some sort of controlled study. Out of the entire USA, you could probably find three GPs who believe just about anything. The only academic paper I was able to find (admittedly, I only did the one quick search yesterday) was the WEM Journal review, which found it to be ineffective.

The thousand-plus cases reported in Ecuador may have been part of a clinical trial, but it sounds to me very anecdotal. (Do you have a source for this data as well?) The WEM Journal article, IIRC, cited at least one case where the patient was treated with both electro-shock and conventional anti-venin treatments, so it's impossible to know which treatment effected the recovery.

I agree with you, the Darwin award guy was so over the top, it's impossible to draw any conclusions about the effectiveness of the technique, other than it's probably not easy or safe to improvise an electric shock device in the field.

_________________________
"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."
-Plutarch

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#121918 - 01/29/08 10:28 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: aardwolfe]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
Hey Aardwolfe, the Italian study was in the Journal of Biochemical Molecular Toxicology volume 21, number 1, 2007. The title was "Inactivation of phospholipase A2 and Metalloproteinaise from crotalus atrox venom by direct current" By Isabella Panfoli et al.

There have been papers in the Journal of the oklahoma medical association and letters published in The Lancet. The info about those are in the other thread.

300 of the 1000 were observed and notes taken including pain, swelling, Haemocoagulation, time until treatment etc, the others were just treated and the outcome noted. 5 percent death to nothing is rather significant I think. However even anecdotal evidence in overwelming numbers becomes a form of proof. I have the report that I can send you. I have sent you a PM about the papers. I also am a friend of the guy who set up the study and it is far from just anecdotal.

Most of the people quoting evidence of it not working with people are actually quoting the Darwin guy incident, then other people quote the people quoting etc. The facts are that no one saying it doesn't work has tried it and done a simple scientific trial such as stinging themself with a bee and then shocking the area with a lawnmower spark system. It is very easy and safe to improvise a device in the feild, just not with a car ignition and especially not with it at 3000 rpm. If they have, then they would know like I do that it works very effectively. The way you can use a car spark system is to just disconnect the distributor lead and turn the car over with the ignition. Some car spark coils are too hot however.

Hey Arney, Thanks for the comment, the device works quite well and we have quite a few out in the field for testing at the moment. We have lots of people interested in them who have used this method in the past and found that they work. It is perfect for the third world because it is wind up, rugged and doesn't use batteries so it can sit on the shelf for 10 years and then work first time.




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#121936 - 01/30/08 01:29 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
"...shocking the area with a lawnmower spark system..."

OUCH!!! I have a pretty good resistance to electric shock (I used to be able to max out those things in the penny arcades). One of the hardest shocks I have ever suffered was from a law mower sparkplug, that sucker almost put me to my knees. I was standing on a wet sidewalk at the time, maybe that had something to do with it...
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#121982 - 01/30/08 08:16 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: OldBaldGuy]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
I failed to mention that the lawnmower is supposed to be turned off, with the lead removed from the spark plug, and only then do you pull the starter cord. It packs quite a punch when the motor is running flat out, because the voltage increases as the speed of the flywheel increases, so touching a running lawnmower..... while standing in water... would definitely be a humbling experience smile The fingers are also very sensitive, and a shock to the fingers is much more painful than one to, perhaps, the arm.

The device that we are building gives about 10 pulses in about 1 second. You have to then rewind it and repeat if necessary. On the arm it feels like more of a quick spasm than a painful shock. It is quite a bit less painful than a bee sting, and it doesn't hurt afterward either.


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#121997 - 01/30/08 01:55 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
"...It is quite a bit less painful than a bee sting, and it doesn't hurt afterward either..."

Sounds MUCH better than getting zapped by a mower!!!
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#122007 - 01/30/08 02:41 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
That journal is published by Wiley Interscience, an extremely reputable agency, so it appears there is more to this than some old wives' tale and a nutbar with a pickup truck.

I got a copy of the paper through the University website (I'm an off-campus PhD student so I have access to their on-line library) and will take a look at it if I get the chance. Not saying I'll be able to, or that I will understand it if I do, but I find this quite fascinating.

Sorry for being so skeptical - well, no, actually I'm not. Scientists are supposed to be skeptical. There's a lot of charlatanry involved in "snakebite medicine", especially in third-world countries, and so before accepting a claim like this at face value, I believe we should demand fairly strong evidence.

A paper published in the Journal of Biochemical and Molecular Toxicology carries a lot more weight with me than "some Italians did a study and found it worked" :-) Hope I didn't offend you, but I'd do the same again, just so you know.

Cheers.
_________________________
"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."
-Plutarch

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#122046 - 01/30/08 10:27 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: aardwolfe]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
Hey Aardwolfe, No hard feelings, it is important to look at things with an open mind, and examine the evidence. A scripture comes to mind, "examine all things and hold fast to that which is good"

The thing that does bother me with most doctors is that they will say "there was a study done that disproves it", but never actually check out the study to make sure that it was done in a proper manner. Eventually I want to have summaries of the different published papers on our site with explainations as to why they worked or not, or why it worked and they didn't conclude that it did.

Now I see that it is more popular for them to say that there is insufficient evidence, which covers them down the road. However the evidence is building, although there should be much more research, we have only touched the very tip of the subject.

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#122137 - 01/31/08 03:30 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
Originally Posted By: Macgyver
Now I see that it is more popular for them to say that there is insufficient evidence, which covers them down the road.


Well, actually, that's always been the standard (and appropriate) scientific response to any new claim. We're all from Missouri, so to speak; "Show me" is how science operates.

GLENDOWER: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.

HOTSPUR: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
But will they come when you do call for them?

(Shakespeare: Henry IV Part I: Act 3)

I can, however, believe that it doesn't get a lot of funding or support because the big pharmaceutical companies haven't figured out a way to make money from it. Also, snake bites may be a big problem in rural South America where people don't have any money, but outside of a handful of backpackers and Park Rangers, it is probably not perceived as a big money-maker for those companies, even if they could patent it.:-(

Keep working at it. Maybe you could get Taser International to invest - they could use some good publicity these days. (Hey, that's not a joke.)
_________________________
"The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled."
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#123788 - 02/14/08 02:04 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: aardwolfe]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Things really have changed with time. There's still a lot of old thinking out there being passed on as gospel, but I think there actually is a fair degree of what constitutes appropriate treatement.

I just took a WFA (Wilderness First Aid) class this past summer. They recommended no tourniquets, splinting, cooling, cutting, or sucking. They recommended keeping the victim calm and evacuating to the nearest medical facility where antivenin (aka anti venom) was available. A Sawyer Extractor has a good reputation with insect bites but was explicitly not recommended for snake bites. The only first aid they recommended was to wash the wound with soap and water and cover with a dry, sterile dressing.

I think that (wash, cover, keep calm, evacuate) is where modern thinking is. Tourniquets, splinting, cutting, sucking, cooling, etc. are older ideas which have not stood the test of today's evidence based medicine -- there's no evidence that these older ideas help; indeed, particularly with cutting, there is evidence that the technique actually makes things worse.

Home remedies/folk medicine such as carbon poultices probably wouldn't hurt anything, but I wouldn't bet my life on them. Home remedies and folk medicine should never be substituted in the case of a life threatening emergency such as a snake bite.

I am even more skeptical about any electrical shocking of the body. At best, it's a highly controversial, highly experimental technique. While I might be willing to beta test softwhere, I for danged sure am not going to be a beta tester with my life.
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#123846 - 02/14/08 03:01 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Hikin_Jim]
jshannon Offline
Addict

Registered: 02/02/03
Posts: 575
Loc: North Texas
As if splinting an arm so as to keep it at rest were going to do major harm...lol. Obviously if you are going to walk out you can't splint your leg. Common sense use is in order.

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#123855 - 02/14/08 05:25 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Hikin_Jim]
JCWohlschlag Offline
Some guy who wandered in…
Old Hand

Registered: 11/26/06
Posts: 724
Loc: Dallas, Pennsylvania, United S...
Originally Posted By: Hikin_Jim
I just took a WFA (Wilderness First Aid) class this past summer. They recommended no tourniquets, splinting, cooling, cutting, or sucking. They recommended keeping the victim calm and evacuating to the nearest medical facility where antivenin (aka anti venom) was available.

I haven’t taken a Wilderness First Aid course as of yet, so I cannot speak from experience, but I thought the premise of a Wilderness First Aid course was one that medical evacuation is improbable or impossible. Being evacuated to a hospital is part of normal first aid and applies pretty much to anything greater than a basic paper-cut.
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#124888 - 02/22/08 09:59 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: JCWohlschlag]
Hikin_Jim Offline
Sheriff
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 10/12/07
Posts: 1804
Loc: Southern California
Originally Posted By: JCWohlschlag
I haven’t taken a Wilderness First Aid course as of yet, so I cannot speak from experience, but I thought the premise of a Wilderness First Aid course was one that medical evacuation is improbable or impossible. Being evacuated to a hospital is part of normal first aid and applies pretty much to anything greater than a basic paper-cut.

I think that the cold, hard reality is that you really can't do much for a snake bite victim in the field. This is also true with severe hypothermia. If you've got a cell or sat phone (inclding SPOT), you may be able to get someone choppered out. Also a PLB would summon help, possibly a chopper in a remote area.
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#125421 - 02/27/08 10:28 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: JCWohlschlag]
aardwolfe Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/22/01
Posts: 923
Loc: St. John's, Newfoundland
I took a Wilderness First Aid course - in fact, I took the instructor's course and was qualified to teach it at one point, although I quit the organization shortly thereafter due to being fed up with their internal politics.

Part of the course covered evacuation - the pros and cons of various methods of evacuation, such as horseback, travois, canoe, rowboat, ATV, how to select a good helicopter landing site, etc. We also practised building and carrying makeshift stretchers, how to carry them over rough terrain, how to rotate stretcher bearers so that they don't get overtired, and so on.

It was impressed on us that a WFA course is not a wilderness survival course. The distinction between regular first aid and wilderness first aid is largely a matter of how far from civilization you are. A regular first aid course assumes that an ambulance is 10-15 minutes, perhaps up to an hour or so, away and that your job is to keep the patient alive and as comfortable as possible until they show up. A WFA course assumes that an ambulance may not be available at all; if it is, it could be 10 or more hours away; and you may have to evacuate the patient yourself. But, unlike a wilderness survival course, it tends to assume that you know where you are and how to get back home.
_________________________
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#282835 - 11/29/16 10:23 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
oklajeff Offline
Stranger

Registered: 03/21/08
Posts: 10
Originally Posted By: OldBaldGuy
"...shocking the area with a lawnmower spark system..."
OUCH!!! I have a pretty good resistance to electric shock (I used to be able to max out those things in the penny arcades). One of the hardest shocks I have ever suffered was from a law mower sparkplug, that sucker almost put me to my knees. I was standing on a wet sidewalk at the time, maybe that had something to do with it...


Originally Posted By: Macgyver
I failed to mention that the lawnmower is supposed to be turned off,...


Hahaha < BIG SMILE and GREAT LAUGH ! >
Yes, a little detail like that can 'feel' different smile.....

Btw, (I think this is my first post) (don't know what happened the past 8 years ! (it's like I fell asleep concerning this site and just woke up ! ) smile

When I still had contacts "around" ,
BEFORE the device was declared a medical device ..., (it was still a first aid device),
a big company had delivered one to ALL of its groups of employees in the world.
It cost only $100 per unit (or LESS) in some places way back (not available any more) ,
and only needed a nine volt battery replaced every year.

Some time later, within a few years, ... a requirement came up of study and testing to be approved and before it could be used for snake bites, sting ray stings? , bee stings, and so on.... so it has to pass a bunch of tests and be approved first before it can be used in the usa again.
......

Same at zoos across the country - reptile houses USED TO HAVE available a little device they could use and talk about with anyone. .... now they have to wait until it is approved.


Edited by oklajeff (11/30/16 01:57 AM)

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#284029 - 03/07/17 06:09 AM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: oklajeff]
Macgyver Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 05/24/06
Posts: 81
Loc: Victoria Australia
That is so true oklajeff, bureaucracy gets in the way of people's lives. It is also about the safety of the devices and insurance companies having concerns and conflicts of interest perhaps. Antivenom is a big thing these days, the $700 vial of antivenom can cost close to $30,000 in some hospitals simply because of hospital policies and insurance companies.

Antivenom isn't the sure bet that many people are made out to believe, they say, "I'll just go to hospital and get antivenom, it will all be ok". But many people have reactions to antivenom, they also can lose limbs, have kidney failure, even have heart attacks... This isn't the rarity, it is common.

The hospital in Quito Equador was able to reduce these effects down to practically zero, just by shocking the area and making sure the venom was neutralised.

I thought that it would be good after 8 years, to come back to this thread and add a few updates.

1) One very important thing is that the modern stun guns SHOULD NOT BE USED!. The voltage is much too high, they can be lethal, and the electricity is possibly AC as well. The bottom line is they are dangerous and they don't work to neutralise the venom. The idea that more voltage is better is simply not true. The research shows that the older style of stun guns which are 75Kv or less are fine and are safe if used appropriately, if you don't have heart disease or a pacemaker. TAZERS don't work as they produce AC as well as DC. This was one of the reasons some of the older studies were not able to prove this method effective.

2) You must use two wires, there needs to be a return path or ground for the shock. A small engine uses the body of the engine as it's ground so that the electricity can flow. If you don't provide a ground such as touching the back side of the limb against the engine body, you don't get much electricity flowing and the venom will not be fully neutralised.

3) The Italian team published another 4 papers discussing results and options for treatment of snake bite. These are: "Structural Modification of Proteins by Direct Electric Current from Low Voltage"; "Inactivation of Crotalus atrox Venom Hemorrhagic Activity by Direct Current Exposure Using Hens Egg Assay", "Inhibition of Hemorragic Snake Venom Components: Old and New Approaches" and "Accelerated removal of deamidated proteins and endogenous electric fields: possible implications".

The head researcher told me that they had to move onto other areas of study, but there were still many areas which can be explored in this area of study.

4) I have found some very good accounts of people using TENS units to treat Brown Recluse bites and snake bites with success. The TENS units were put on for 20 - 30 minutes and put up high. In all cases reported the swelling went down and the pain left almost immediately.

5) Cattle prods (hot shots) have been used with success by ranchers and vets, (TAZERS and modern stun guns were used and found that they didn't work but changing to a cattle prod produced great results).

6) This is one that I thought I would never report, I received a credible account from someone who shocked their brother's hand which had just been bitten by a pigmy rattler. It was swelling fast and very painful. They shocked it well with leads from a Belarus tractor's battery! (could have been 24 volts) The bite stopped swelling, the pain left and he started to recover. The Italian papers used 12 volts DC and it seems that it is possible to have the low voltage penetrate the skin and neutralise the venom. I suspect that sweat would be an electrolyte which would break down the resistance of the skin allowing the low voltage to penetrate into the tissues.

The accounts still trickle in about all sorts of things that this seems to help with. One lady is using it in conjuction with hydrogen peroxide, to neutralise the lethal stroke like effects of a toxic weed that her cattle sometimes eat. Others have used it on boils and dog bites to kill the infection. There is still lots of potential for this to be studied, but a TENS unit is safe and legal everywhere and it doesn't hurt to try it on the way to the hospital now does it?

Hope that is helpful information, and if any of you have used this personally with success I would love to hear your experiences.

Cheers,
Macgyver.


Edited by Macgyver (03/08/17 02:26 AM)

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#284030 - 03/07/17 01:59 PM Re: Immediate action for a snake bite? [Re: Macgyver]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
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Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 5642
Loc: southern Cal
Shocking news indeed!!!

Old threads never die, they just.......
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