Document Detail

Efficacy of Wyeth polyvalent antivenin used in the pretreatment of copperhead envenomation in mice.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  10560306     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVES: Wyeth polyvalent crotalid antivenin is the only commercial antivenin available in the United States to treat North American crotalid envenomations. Wyeth antivenin is made from the serum of horses hyperimmunized with four crotalid venoms (Crotalus adamanteus, Crotalus atrox, Crotalus durrisus terrificus, and Bothrops atrox). Although Wyeth antivenin is believed to be effective against all North American crotalids, its efficacy against Agkistrodon contortrix (copperhead) has never been tested. The purpose of this experiment was to determine the efficacy of Wyeth antivenin in the treatment of copperhead envenomation. METHODS: Wyeth antivenin was reconstituted in 10 mL of sterile water. In preliminary experiments, 20 mL/kg of Wyeth antivenin administered intraperitoneally prevented death in mice given a lethal subcutaneous injection of Crotalus adamanteus venom. Freeze-dried copperhead venom was reconstituted in sterile water, and a dose-lethality curve for subcutaneous venom was constructed using seven groups of 10 mice each. The endpoint was survival at 24 hours. A dose that is lethal in 90% of the animals receiving it (LD90) was estimated from this curve. Thirty mice were randomly given pretreatment with 20 mL/kg Wyeth antivenin administered intraperitoneally or an equal volume of normal saline as a control. Thirty minutes later, all mice received an LD90 subcutaneous injection of copperhead venom. Lethality was determined at 24 hours. RESULTS: Following the injection of copperhead venom, none of the 15 control mice and 14 of 15 treatment mice survived until 24 hours (p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: Wyeth antivenin is effective in treating copperhead envenomation in mice and may therefore be expected to be effective in humans.
J R Brubacher; D Lachmanen; R S Hoffman
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Wilderness & environmental medicine     Volume:  10     ISSN:  1080-6032     ISO Abbreviation:  Wilderness Environ Med     Publication Date:  1999  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1999-12-03     Completed Date:  1999-12-03     Revised Date:  2003-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9505185     Medline TA:  Wilderness Environ Med     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  142-5     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Emergency Medicine Vancouver Hospital, British Columbia, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Antivenins / pharmacology*,  therapeutic use
Crotalid Venoms / adverse effects*,  pharmacology
Disease Models, Animal
Injections, Subcutaneous
Toxicity Tests
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antivenins; 0/Crotalid Venoms

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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