Snake Bite Treatment

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Lifestyle Overland

Rank VI
Founder 500

Navigator I

On the Road
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Just came across this excellent video on snake bite treatment:

The most recent research he mentions is why I haven't bought a snake bite kit. My game plan is to 1) keep calm 2) identify the snake type (should be easy, because it will be dead) 3) and get the victim to closest medical treatment facility with antivenom. I don't plan on using a tourniquet or wrap.

Since not all hospitals carry antivenom, you should contact the poison control center at 1 (800) 222-1222 to ensure you're headed to the right facility (In the US only). You should put this number in your phone now...

What is your game plan in the event of a bite?
What if you're bitten while overlanding solo?
What would you do if you're child is bitten?

These are some good scenarios to have a game plan in place for when the unexpected strikes. (see what I did there?)


Rank IV

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Townsville, Australia
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Always apply a pressure bandage over the bite sites but make sure you don't rub or disturb the bite as you want there to still be venom which can be swabbed to identify the appropriate anti venom. Then if you have the supplies, bandage from the extremities of the limb towards the body leaving the fingers or toes uncovered to monitor cap refill, it might seem counter intuitive to bandage in this direction however this is the modern doctrine for a reason. Then immobilise the limb with a splint and elevate the body.
Preferably have someone call for help while you do this but it is important to slow the spread of venom before moving the patient as any movement will speed up the spread and you want to suppress is as long as possible for you don't know how long it might take to get treatment.
Be careful with identification as it depends on what species are in your region but for example here we have Eastern Brown, King Brown, Tiger Snake, Copper Head, and Taipan which while fairly easily identifiable as adults can look very similar at various stages of development, especially when you are under stress in an emergency situation.

4xFar Adventures

Rank VI
Founder 500


San Francisco,CA
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Good video, reinforces what I've heard before (remain calm, bite kits generally don't work, light bandaging). I didn't realize the treatment for kids is the same as adults, where you treat for the amount of venom, not the amount of weight or size of the person.
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