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Article
September 25, 1987

Envenomation by the Eastern Coral Snake (Micrurus fulvius fulvius)A Study of 39 Victims

Author Affiliations

From the Medical Service, Veterans Administration Medical Center (Dr Kitchens), and the Departments of Medicine (Dr Kitchens) and Pediatrics (Dr Van Mierop), University of Florida, Gainesville.

From the Medical Service, Veterans Administration Medical Center (Dr Kitchens), and the Departments of Medicine (Dr Kitchens) and Pediatrics (Dr Van Mierop), University of Florida, Gainesville.

JAMA. 1987;258(12):1615-1618. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400120065026
Abstract

We gathered data on 39 victims of Eastern coral snake bite over a 12-year period. The most common situation resulting in snakebite was erroneous identification of the snake as the nonpoisonous scarlet king snake. While no patient died, several experienced severe envenomation, including bulbospinal respiratory paralysis. We found that neurologic symptoms may be delayed for 12 hours, and then may be precipitous. Envenomation occurs in 75% of the persons bitten by a coral snake. Antivenin is effective and should be intravenously administered early to patients who have been bitten by a positively identified coral snake, depending on the clinical presentation.

(JAMA 1987;258:1615-1618)

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