Snakebite Prevention and Awareness Project
Snakebite is one of the most neglected public health issues among the poor rural communities living in Nepal’s tropical Terai region due to the high population density and widespread agricultural activities that bring people into contact with snakes. This region is home to several venomous snake species and there are numerous fatalities every year due to snake bites. Despite this the country as a whole lacks a functional snake bite control program.
Many facets need to be addressed in order to reduce the occurrence of snakebite, and morbidity and mortality due to snakebite in Nepal. In particular:
- identifying venomous snakes; the clinical presentation of snakebite and pathophysiology;
- reducing fatalities – experiences from Nepal and around the world;
- improving medical treatment – antivenom design, development and production;
- training paramedics and first responders on effective local responses;
- sharing information – targeting community awareness on prevention and first-aid; and
- looking to the future – identifying what communities need for prevention and treatment.
Check Our General Questions
1.No clinical manifestation except bite mark. This may be due to bite by non-venomous snakes or bite by venomous snake without injection of venom (Dry bite)
2.Local manifestation in the part of body that has been bitten.
3.Systemic manifestation due to systemic absorption of venom. This may be neurotoxicity or hematotoxicity depending on the envenoming species.
4.Signs and symptoms due to traditional treatment for example; local gangrene due to tight tourniquet, pain abdomen, vomiting etc. due to congestion of chilies, herbal medicine etc. Tight tourniquet/s may cause pain, swelling and congestion that may be confused with local envenoming.
If the world keeps warming, yes. As the weather warms up here in Nepal with climate change, you will start finding venomous snakes in areas where they were never found before because it was too cold. Another aspect that can contribute is changes in the habitat. For example, with deforestation you create open habitats that a lot of venomous snakes, such as the cobras and the Russell vipers, actually find more conducive to their lifestyle.
It is fairly easy to achieve and there is good evidence to back this up. In Ghana it was found that if you introduce effective treatment, train nurses and doctors who deliver the treatment, and educate the community to come to the hospital sooner, fatalities can be reduced by as much as 80% in a very short period. It took Ghana only 18 months. So I think having 12 years from now to cut the fatality and disability by 50% is quite a reasonable target. At core it is about effective treatment, health workers who know how to give treatment and communities that prioritise getting that treatment.