OK Poison Control Warns Against Home Remedies For Snake Bites

Friday, March 18th 2016, 10:29 pm
By: News 9

Last year, an Oklahoma marine was bitten on a hike, and ended up in the hospital where his life changed dramatically. He lost a leg.

Also in 2015, little Blake from Lexington suffered a bite from a pygmy snake, but the local zoo saved him with a special anti-venom.

10/5/16 Related Story: OKC Zoo Helps Save Toddler After Pygmy Rattlesnake Bite

Now, the Oklahoma Center for Poison & Drug Information is gearing up for calls to increase as spring-like weather draws more people outdoors.

“We’ve already seen our first I think three or four snake bites of the year and it’s just going to escalate from here,” said Managing Director Scott Schaeffer.

He encouraged everyone to call their 24/7 help line at (800)-222-1222, that is staffed with nurses and pharmacists.

That's safer than trying what you see in the movies, he added.

Schaeffer said sucking the venom can actually cause a really bad infection.

Pouring whiskey or other alcohol on the bite, cutting into it, or dunking it in ice could also make the wound worse, Schaeffer told News 9.

“I’ve heard of people who have actually tried to use stun guns to try to neutralize the venom. That absolutely does not work. The electricity is actually potentially going to cause some burns to the skin and do further damage,” he explained.

“What we want a person to do is to wash the wound with soap and water, give us a call or head to the emergency department.” Schaeffer recommended.