Man hospitalized as snakebite season begins prematurely

March 14, 2010 15:25


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A 64-year-old resident of Mevasseret Zion outside Jerusalem was hospitalized in moderate condition in the intensive care unit of Safed’s Ziv Medical Center on Sunday after being bitten by a snake on a hike near Katzrin on the Golan.

Unit director Dr. Yosef Ezri warned the public to be very careful to avoid snakes during the current season, as the creatures are waking up a bit prematurely from their winter hibernation, crawl through high grasses and have glands full of venom. The first signs are pain or a burning sensation, possibly followed by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness and reduced blood pressure, he said.

Call Magen David Adom at 101 or take the victim immediately to a medical facility. If MDA is on its way, put the victim on the ground and calm him down. Wash the skin and prevent the victim from moving the bitten limb. Do not cut the skin at the site of the bite and suck out the venom or apply a tourniquet. Try to identify the type of snake by the way it looks and inform the doctors or medics, Ezri advised.

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