Arrive Alive

One seriously injured in a snake bite incident in the Drakensberg

ST.A.R.T Rescue in the Drakensberg was activated for reports of a patient who had been bitten by a Snake at a local hotel.

On arrival, it was found that the patient was showing clear signs of a snake bite, with a clear bite mark and swelling to the affected area.

Immediately, basic treatment was initiated while flip cards were used to try to identify the snake.

The patient quickly identified the snake as a Berg Adder. S.T.A.R.T Partner Netcare911 Helicopter Crew and flight desk were contacted and the flight was activated, to allow for the patient to get to a Level 1 trauma hospital in the shortest possible time frame.

The patient was handed over from the S.T.A.R.T Medical team to the flight crew where the patient was successfully flown to the hospital for further treatment was completed.

"The Berg Adder is considered a Venomous snake and dangerous and is a bad-tempered snake that hisses loudly and strikes easily.

Its venom differs from most adders in that it is mainly neurotoxic with a specific action on the optic and facial nerves, causing drooping eyelids, double vision, dizziness, and temporary loss of taste and smell.

Breathing may also be affected in severe bites and bites can be very serious. There is no antivenom for the bite of this snake and victims may have to be artificially ventilated. Some of the symptoms may prevail for several weeks after a bite."

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