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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 47  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 270-274

A retrospective study of use of polyvalent anti-snake venom and risk factors for mortality from snake bite in a tertiary care setting

1 Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College, Miraj, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, BVDU Medical College, Sangli, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Smita L Gaidhankar
Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College, Miraj, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0253-7613.157117

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Aims: Envenomation with poisonous snakes is associated with considerable morbidity and mortality. The present study was undertaken with the objectives of assessing anti-snake venom (ASV) use, early adverse reactions to ASV, premedication and clinical outcomes in snake bite patients. Association of various risk factors (age, gender, dose of ASV, time gap between snake bite and ASV administration, use of mechanical ventilation and type of snake bite) with mortality was also assessed. Settings and Design: This retrospective study was conducted at two Tertiary Care Teaching Hospitals. Subjects and Methods: The medical records of 176 patients of snake bite with documented use of ASV were retrospectively analyzed to retrieve relevant data. Statistical Analysis: Descriptive statistics was used to express results about ASV use, early adverse reactions to ASV, premedication and clinical outcomes. Univariate and multivariate analysis was performed to find out significant risk factors associated with mortality. Results: The main indication for ASV was vasculotoxic snake bite (75%) followed by neurotoxic snake bite (16%). Mean dose of ASV was 18.63 ± 14.52 vials. Prophylactic premedication with corticosteroids alone or in combination with antihistaminic was used in more than 70% patients. Early adverse reactions to ASV were seen in 4% patients. Neurotoxic snake bite was a significant risk factor associated with mortality in multivariate analysis. Conclusions: Neurotoxic snake bite is an independent predictor of mortality in snake bite patients. Currently used polyvalent ASV may be less effective in treating neurotoxic snake bite.


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