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Venomous Snakes

Venomous Snakes

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Published by draculavanhelsing
Major venomous snakes of New South Wales (Australia)
Major venomous snakes of New South Wales (Australia)

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Published by: draculavanhelsing on Sep 26, 2010
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11/20/2012

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4.1
Scale names and counts
Figure (14) Scale names and counts
4.2
Brown Snakes
(Genus
Pseudonaja
 )
4.2.1
Epidemiology
Brown Snakes cause the majority of snake bites inAustralia. However because of the small amount ofvenom available (average only 5mg) and the small fangsize (average length only 2.8mm), many bites do notresult in significant envenoming. On average only 1 in 5or less Brown Snake bites is severe enough to requireantivenom therapy. Nevertheless, when a significantamount of venom is injected, it can cause major and lifethreatening envenoming very rapidly. All Brown Snakebites should be treated as potentially lethal.
Figure (15) Common Brown Snake (
 Pseudonajatextilis
 )
NSW HEALTHSnakebite and Spiderbite Clinical Management GuidelinesPAGE 27
Details of major venomous snakes
SECTION 4
Table 4.1 TaxonomySnakeScientificnameMid bodyscale count Ventral scalecount Anal scalecountSubcaudalscale count
Common Brown SnakeP. textilis17 rows185235divided4575Western Brown SnakeP. nuchalis1719 rows180230divided5070Ringed Brown SnakeP. modesta17 rows145175divided3555
 
Figure (16) Western Brown Snake (
 Pseudonaja nuchalis
 )
The colour of Brown Snakes is very variable and misleadingfor identification purposes. They may be brown, red brown,grey, very dark brown and may be plain in colour, havespeckling, stripes or bands, or have a dark or black head.Length is variable, but can occasionally reach 2 metres.
Figure (17) Western Brown Snake – black head colourphase
The Ringed Brown Snake is smaller than its cousins, andalthough it can cause envenoming, there is no evidencethat it can cause severe or life threatening envenoming,and unlike all its cousins, the venom lacks a procoagulantand therefore cannot cause a coagulopathy.
Figure (18) Ringed Brown Snake (
 Pseudonaja modesta
 )Figure (19) Juvenile Brown Snake
4.2.2
Clinical venom effects
Powerfully toxic venom, with potential to causecoagulopathy, renal failure and paralysis. In practice, thedominant feature of Brown Snake envenoming iscoagulopathy (defibrination type). Paralysis is only veryrarely seen, usually in bites where there has been a longdelay in giving antivenom therapy. Renal failure is amoderately common feature of Brown Snakeenvenoming in adults and is usually an acute tubularnecrosis, which may require a period of haemodialysis.The risk seems increased if the patient has also hadalcohol near the time of the bite. If renal failure ispresent then the coagulopathy is usually of the true DICtype, with thrombocytopenia.The Ringed Brown Snake does not appear to causecoagulopathy or severe envenoming.
4.2.3
 Venom detection
The expected pattern if Brown Snake venom is present ispositive in well 2 + well 7 (positive control). It is unclearwhat pattern may result with Ringed Brown Snakevenom.
4.2.4
 Antivenom
Preferred antivenom is CSL Brown Snake Antivenom. Thestarting dose for severe Brown Snake envenomation iscurrently being investigated by a national multi-centreprospective trial. The initial dose may range from 2 to 5 vials.In small remote centres, the current recommended initialdose in a life-threatening situation is 2 vials. Organise medicalretrieval as early as possible for the patient to be imme-diately transferred to the closest regional or tertiaryreferral hospital for ongoing management and additionaldoses as required.
PAGE 28NSW HEALTHSnakebite and Spiderbite Clinical Management Guidelines
 
NSW HEALTHSnakebite and Spiderbite Clinical Management GuidelinesPAGE 29
Sydney (metropolitan hospitals)Newcastle (Mater and John Hunter)Broken Hill
WilcanniaTibooburraWentworthMilduraBalranaldIvanhoeHilstonHayBarhamDeniliquinFinlayTocumwalAlburyJerilderieNarranderaUranaBerriganLockhartCorowaCulcairnHentyHolbrookBatlowTumutTumbarumbraCoolamonWestWyalongBarellanLeetonGundagaiJuneeCondobolinTrundleTullamoreTemoraQueanbeyanCoomaHardenCootamundraQuiandallaYoungBooroowaYass
Canberra
BegaCanowindraEugowraForbesParkesCudalPeak HillCowraGoulburnCrookwellMolongYeovalPambulaDelegateBombalaMoruyaBatemans BayBraidwoodMilton/UlladullaBowralWollongongBulliBlayneyOberonLithgowBlue Mountains/KatoombaNarromineTottenhamPortlandBathurstWellingtonTrangie
Dubbo
DunedooGulgongMudgeeCoolahRylstoneCessnockGosfordSingletonCobarNynganWarrenGilgandraGulargamboneBinnawayCoonabarabranGunnedahMuswellbrookDungogMaitlandSconeForsterTareeBuladelahMurrurindiQuirindiWerris CreekBaradineCoonambleNarrabriBoggabriManillaGoodogaLightningRidgeBourkeBrewarrinaWalgettCollarenabriMoreeWee WaaBarrabaWarialdaBingaraInverellBundarra
Tamworth
WalchaWauchopeGloucesterBellingenDorrigoGlenInnesVegetable CreekTenterfieldCorakiCasinoBonalboUrbanvilleKyogle
Grafton
MacleanBallinaNimbin
Lismore
Byron BayMullumbimbyTweed HeadsMurwillumbah
Coffs Harbour
MacksvilleKempsey
Port MacaquarieArmidaleOrangeGriffithWagga
Grenfell
Figure (20) Common Brown Snake (
 Pseudonaja textilis
 ) — Approximate distribution in NSW (purple shadingdenotes location of snakes in all maps)Figure (21) Western Brown Snake (
 Pseudonaja nuchialis
 ) — Approximate distribution in NSW (purple shading)
Sydney (metropolitan hospitals)Newcastle (Mater and John Hunter)
 
Broken Hill
WilcanniaTibooburraWentworthMilduraBalranaldIvanhoeHilstonHayBarhamDeniliquinFinlayTocumwalAlburyJerilderieNarranderaUranaBerriganLockhartCorowaCulcairnHentyHolbrookBatlowTumutTumbarumbraCoolamonWestWyalongBarellanLeetonGundagaiJuneeCondobolinTrundleTullamoreTemoraQueanbeyanCoomaHardenCootamundraQuiandallaYoungBooroowaYass
Canberra
BegaCanowindraEugowraForbesParkesCudalPeak HillCowraGoulburnCrookwellMolongYeovalPambulaDelegateBombalaMoruyaBatemans BayBraidwoodMilton/UlladullaBowralWollongongBulliBlayneyOberonLithgowBlue Mountains/KatoombaNarromineTottenhamPortlandBathurstWellingtonTrangie
Dubbo
DunedooGulgongMudgeeCoolahRylstoneCessnockGosfordSingletonCobarNynganWarrenGilgandraGulargamboneBinnawayCoonabarabranGunnedahMuswellbrookDungogMaitlandSconeForsterTareeBuladelahMurrurindiQuirindiWerris CreekBaradineCoonambleNarrabriBoggabriManillaGoodogaLightningRidgeBourkeBrewarrinaWalgettCollarenabriMoreeWee WaaBarrabaWarialdaBingaraInverellBundarra
Tamworth
WalchaWauchopeGloucesterBellingenDorrigoGlenInnesVegetable CreekTenterfieldCorakiCasinoBonalboUrbanvilleKyogle
Grafton
MacleanBallinaNimbin
Lismore
Byron BayMullumbimbyTweed HeadsMurwillumbah
Coffs Harbour
MacksvilleKempsey
Port MacaquarieArmidaleOrangeGriffithWagga
 
Grenfell
In regional referral and tertiary referral hospitalssufficient antivenom stocks will be available to giveadditional doses as required and replenish stocks at thesmall remote centres. If there is a coagulopathy, at least5 doses of antivenom may be required.As dosing recommendation may evolve with time,consultation with a clinical toxicologist via the
NewSouth Wales Poisons Information Centre, phone
131126
is recommended in all cases.
4.2.5
Distribution
Widely distributed throughout Australia including botharid areas and wetter areas. Adapt well to human landuse and are the most common snake in urban areas andfarmlands. The maps show approximate theoreticaldistribution only.

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