Newly available anti-venom could change snake bite procedure

Published: Oct. 17, 2019 at 7:01 PM CDT
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A nationally recognized snake venom expert, Dr. Dan Keyler, was in Rapid City Thursday to introduce medical staff to a new anti-venom called Anavip.

Anavip is only the second anti-venom approved by the Federal Drug Administration to combat the effects of rattlesnake bites. Traditionally, bite victims are treated with Crofab and, while they are both effective, Anavip stays in the body longer to prevent venom toxins from resurfacing.

Keyler says another important factor is Anavip doesn't need to be refrigerated.

"The anti-venom could be carried on ambulances and kept at room temperature," Keyler said. "Historically, anti-venoms have always been refrigerated."

While the new drug is cutting edge technology, it probably won't find its way to the ambulance because of how much it costs. However, it could still end up on the shelves at area hospitals.

The information presented is laying the ground work for an update to EMS procedures coming next year.

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