Management in the Field

It is important to try to identify the snake if it is available but not to try to capture the snake at risk of being bitten again. Patients can be shown pictures of snakes later. It is important to transfer the bite victim to a medical facility as rapidly as possible. The patient should lie down and remove constricting clothing and jewelry. Tourniquets, incision, and suction are best avoided.

Tokish concluded that field management is largely ineffective and may be detrimental to the outcome of the envenomated patient. Helicopter transport services are overused and should be reserved for patients whose current (not anticipated) clinical condition requires the immediate administration of antivenin or ICU support (64).

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