Brown snake bites man in Casino
A CASINO man, believed to be an off-duty police officer, has been bitten by a brown snake in Casino this afternoon.
A NSW Ambulance media spokesman said a male patient aged around 40 was transported from Casino to Lismore Base Hospital with a suspected snakebite.
Sources have told The Northern Star the man is an off-duty policeman, although police will not confirm this.
A spokeswoman from Lismore Base Hospital said the patient was still in the emergency department in a stable condition.
Pathology samples have been taken to ascertain the severity of the bite.
ABOUT BROWN SNAKE VENOM
According to the website Toxinology, brown snake venom is one of the most potent of all known snake venoms.
It contains multiple potent toxins that cause paralysis, are fast acting, and "procoagulants" which interfere with blood clotting and can cause major bleeding.
It adds that kidney failure is a common effect of brown snake snakebites in humans, in cases where there is significant envenomation.
First aid for brown snake bite is the same as for other snakebites and is based on immobilising the venom at the bite site until medical treatment can be obtained, using a pressure bandage.
This can extend the life expectancy of the victim by preventing the venom entering the bloodstream from the endocrine system where it begins its journey.
The website states that "only about 20% of brown snake bites result in significant envenoming, requiring antivenom therapy, but for this minority of cases, envenoming is often severe and potentially lethal."
"It is therefore essential all cases be managed as an emergency, requiring rapid application of first aid and urgent medical assessment."
Treatment usually requires several vials of brown snake antivenom to be administered intravenously.