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What May Increase Your Risk for Problems After a Snake or Lizard Bite


What May Increase Your Risk for Problems After a Snake or Lizard Bite?

Many conditions, lifestyle choices, medicines, and diseases interfere with your ability to heal or fight infection. You may be at risk for a more serious problem from your symptoms if you have any of the following. Be sure to tell your doctor.

Conditions

  • Age older than 60
  • Children and small adults
  • Malnutrition
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Previous allergic reaction to snakes or lizards or to antivenom used to treat a prior bite
  • Previous snake or lizard bite that required medical treatment
  • Previous treatment with snake antivenom
  • Previous surgery to injured area
  • Previous surgery to remove the spleen
  • Uncertain tetanus immunization history

Lifestyle choices

  • Alcohol abuse or withdrawal
  • Drug abuse or withdrawal
  • Smoking or other tobacco use

Medicines

  • Anticoagulants, such as aspirin, heparin, or warfarin (Coumadin)
  • Corticosteroids, such as prednisone
  • Heart medicines, such as beta-blockers
  • Medicines to prevent organ transplant rejection
  • Medicines used to treat cancer (chemotherapy)
  • Radiation therapy

Diseases

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerSean P. Bush, MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine, Envenomation Specialist
Last RevisedJune 18, 2010

eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise

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