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Thursday, 6th May 2010

New: Searchable Database: Venomous Snakes and Antivenoms Search

This is the most unique database of the week. Maybe month (and it's just started) or even longer.

From the World Health Organization:

An estimated five million people are bitten each year resulting in up to 2.5 million envenomings, at least 100 000 deaths and around three times as many amputations and other permanent disabilities each year. Bites by venomous snakes can cause paralysis that may prevent breathing, bleeding disorders that can lead to fatal haemorrhage, irreversible kidney failure and severe tissue damage that can cause permanent disability and may result in limb amputation.

Victims are mostly women, children and farmers living in poor rural communities, where health systems are not well equipped and medical resources are sparse.

Today, countries face a critical global shortage of appropriate, safe and effective snake antivenoms. A combination of factors has led to the present situation: poor data on the number and type of snake bites, difficulty to estimate the needs and define markets- combined with deficient distribution policies- have contributed to manufacturers stopping production or increasing prices of antivenoms. Poor regulation and marketing of inappropriate antivenoms, has led to a loss of confidence in the available antivenoms by clinicians, public health officials and patients.

Direct to Online Database of Snake Anitvenoms

1) Searchable Database
Search by Region or Location; Snake Species, Antivenom Products. Results pages include images, maps, species info; Taxonomic family

2) Map--Global Distribution of Venomous Snakes

Fast Fact:

Out of more than 3000 species of snakes in the world, some 600 are venomous and over 200 are considered to be medically important.

See Also: New: WHO Guidelines for the Production, Control and Regulation of Snake Antivenom Immunoglobulins

Source: World Health Organization (WHO)

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