How to identify and treat snake bites?

How to identify and treat snake bites

Snake bites are not easier to cope with. Numerous researchers are directing their focus on How to identify and treat snake bites? Nevertheless, the intensity of snake bites and the venom that a snake injects in your body differs mainly across species. Recommended snake bite treatment varies with the type of venom (cytotoxic, haemotoxic or neurotoxic). Administration of wrong therapy might terminate into a fatality.

How to identify and treat snake bites

The three types of venom identification:


When a snake’s venom produces cytotoxic effects, it is more likely to disrupt the overall cell functioning and in turn, lead to cell lysis and death.


When a snake’s venom produces haemotoxic effects, it interferes with the normal functioning of red blood cells. Further, it brings about its lysis, kills them and works as an anti-clot agent. This, in turn, gives rise to internal as well as external bleeding.

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When a snake’s venom produces neurotoxic effects, it leads to the destruction of nerves and nervous tissues.

How to identify and treat snake bites?

Cytotoxic effects producing snake venom:

Cytotoxic effects producing snake venom

Snake bites of adders and vipers are cytotoxic in nature. It produces a mark exhibiting two punctures at the bite site. Such biting is characterized by instant pain, swelling, and blistering. You may experience nausea and discomfort.

Haemotoxic effects producing snake venom:

Haemotoxic effects producing snake venom

Snake bites of boomslangs and vine snakes are haemotoxic in nature. This type of snake bite produces puncture wounds at the point of initiation. You may not experience immediate pain in this case. However, those with a haemotoxic effect may exhibit the symptoms of severe headaches accompanied by nausea and vomiting.

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Neurotoxic effects producing snake venom:

Neurotoxic effects producing snake venom

Snake bites of mambas and cobras exhibit neurotoxic effects on the person’s body. This type of snake bite is characterised by two puncture wounds. It more or less resembles a sting. There may be little or absolutely no swelling or bruising. Feeling confused, dizziness, swallowing difficulty, and respiratory discomfort is some of the commonly associated symptoms.

Treating snake bites:

Your first step should be the identification of the snake type. If you cannot identify, at least try to have a rough idea about the snake’s physical appearance to describe the same before emergency staff.

  • Loosen the clothes of snake bite victim and try to relocate them towards shade.
  • Help them to remain calm and avoid movement. If moved, the venom may start spreading throughout his system.
  • Try to gently clean and dress the wound. Avoid pressure exertion and bruising over it.
  • Be thorough with CPR technique and administer it if the situation asks for.
  • Rush to the hospital as soon as possible or call on for emergency help.

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