I’m fact-checking a piece for a national outdoor magazine. I have several questions about snake bite treatment methods:
- Is there any benefit to the “cut-and-suck” method or should we get rid of it altogether?
- What is your professional opinion on the effectiveness of suction devices?
- Should a responder apply a tourniquet to a snake bite victim?
- Should a coldpack be applied to a snake bite victim?
- Is marking the edge of the bite to track the swelling helpful to medical personnel?
- No, none. In fact, it could result in an infection, impair healing and the cut could cause an unintended injury.
- Useless. A nice study done a few years ago demonstrated their lack of efficacy. Their reputation was based on hype and not science.
- Never a tourniquet. For some with neurotoxins, especially the most potent ones found outside of NA, a compression wrap may be helpful.
- It will not help and could cause more injury.
- Yes, it could be.
Remember all snakes are not the same. There are different general kinds of toxins. The management of each is directed at the damage or harm that could result