Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
Advantech Europe
Schiller
Primedic

Antiparalytic Nasal Spray Treats Venomous Snakebites

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 19 Aug 2013
Topical administration of antiparalytics using a nasal spray could dramatically reduce the number of global fatalities from venomous snakebites.

Researchers at The California Academy of Sciences (CAS; San Francisco, USA) and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF; USA) have developed an inexpensive, heat-stable, needle-free device that delivers aerosolized neostigmine to reverse paralysis. Since anticholinesterases are used as reversal agents for nondepolarizing curare-derived neuromuscular blocking agents, and are recommended in virtually all cases of neurotoxic snake envenomation, the researchers hypothesized that a topically applied anticholinesterase might also have utility in the early treatment of snakebite.

The researchers then used a continuous infusion of mivacurium—a short-duration nondepolarizing neuromuscular blocking agent—to induce neuromuscular blockade in a volunteer, successfully mimicking important elements of paralysis from snakebite neurotoxicity, including progressive bulbar deficits and neck and respiratory muscle weakness. A subsequent single application of atomized 6% neostigmine quickly improved the clinical measures of neuromuscular blockade. The study was published early online on July 24, 2013, in Clinical Case Reports.

“In addition to being an occupational hazard for field scientists, snakebite is a leading cause of accidental death in the developing world, especially among otherwise healthy young people,” said lead author Matt Lewin, PhD, director of the center for exploration and travel health at the CAS. “We are trying to change the way people think about this ancient scourge and persistent modern tragedy by developing an inexpensive, heat stable, easy-to-use treatment that will at least buy people enough time to get to the hospital for further treatment.”

Snakebite causes numerous fatalities, comparable to that of AIDS in some developing countries. Predominantly killing young and otherwise healthy individuals, the neurotoxins paralyze victims, resulting in death by respiratory failure. There is currently little funding to devise new approaches to address this problem, with more than 75% of patients who die from snakebite not surviving to receive treatment.

Related Links:

California Academy of Sciences
University of California, San Francisco



Channels

Surgical Techniques

view channel
Image: The RF Assure Detection System X (Photo courtesy of RF Surgical Systems).

Integrated Solution Detects Retained Surgical Sponges

A next-generation radio frequency (RF) detection system incorporates essential compliance support functions and improved scanning coverage for multiple surgical specialties. The RF Assure Detection... Read more

Women's Health

view channel

Women Undergoing Heart Attack Delay Hospital Arrival

Women suffering a heart attack wait much longer than men to call emergency medical services and face significantly longer delays getting to a hospital, according to a new study. Researchers at the University of Bologna (Italy) examined records of 7,457 European patients enrolled from 2010 to 2014 in an international... Read more

Health IT

view channel
Image: ResolutionMD across multiple devices (Photo courtesy of Calgary Scientific).

Healthcare Communication Platform Offers Seamless Image Access

Novel diagnostic medical imaging software offers better access to health information, supports increased teamwork, and enhances communication among practitioners and patients. ResolutionMD enables doctors... Read more

Business

view channel

Universal Public Drug Coverage Would Save Canada Billions

A new study claims that Canada could save CAD 7.3 billion annually by providing universal public coverage of medically necessary prescription drugs. Researchers at the University of British Columbia (UBC; Vancouver, Canada) and the University of Toronto (ON, Canada) used published data on prescribing patterns and costs... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.