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Bites by venomous snakes cause more than 100,000 deaths and many permanent sequelae each year, while scorpion stings kill thousands of children. Hypersensitization to bee, wasp and ant venoms is a common cause of anaphylaxis but mass attacks by African killer bees can kill by direct envenoming. Aquatic venomous animals include sea snakes, stinging fish, jellyfish, corals, cone shells, blue-ringed octopuses and sea urchins. Treatment of severe envenoming by all these groups of animals requires specific antivenom, supportive treatment for cardiorespiratory and renal failure, and surgical management of wounds. Animal bites and stings can be prevented by learning about local venomous fauna, wearing protective clothing, using a light after dark, and sleeping off the ground or under a bed net. © 2011 Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Original publication

DOI

10.1016/j.mpmed.2011.12.001

Type

Journal article

Journal

Medicine

Publication Date

01/03/2012

Volume

40

Pages

159 - 163