"This life therefore, is not godliness but the process of becoming godly, not health but getting well, not being but becoming, not rest but exercise. We are not now what we shall be, but we are on the way. The process is not yet finished, but it is actively going on. This is not the goal, but it is the right road. At present, everything does not gleam and sparkle, but everything is being cleansed." --Martin Luther

Sunday, August 30, 2009

snake bites

Pano, the guy I wrote about earlier had been bitten by a puff adder. Due only to his large size and the amount of venom he got did he survive. We asked him how and what to do about snake bits.
He said the snake bit kits aren’t practical. By the time you start trying to get the venom out, it is half way up your arm (or whatever) on the way to the heart. You can’t possibly suck and spit it all out.
Tourniquets aren’t helpful either. The only way to stop the flow is to make it tight enough, then you’d lose the limb (which I suppose is better than death).
Anti-venom is not a good solution either unless you are 100% sure of the snake. Most locals will have other names for the snake, or not know the name but tell you something so it looks like they know. Then you get the wrong anti-venom and poison yourself. (Speaking of which, he said the green snakes we killed were probably just a common green house snake (still poisonous probably). But the black mamba-that one was real!)
He said the best thing to do was get a cattle prod/taser type thing and shock the snot out of yourself at the site of the bite. The shock will cause the venom to break up into smaller molecules. You will of course still get sick and swell up, but not die (but you will probably wish you did!). The key is having it nearby to be able to shock yourself soon enough, before the poison reaches the heart.

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