A two-year-old from Plainview had to be airlifted to Covenant Children’s Hospital in Lubbock after she was bitten by a rattlesnake Wednesday morning. Hospital officials report she remains in fair condition.
Dr. Juan Fitz with The Covenant Medical Center ER said people who get bit in communities surrounding Lubbock are usually transported to their facility because rural communities struggle to afford the expensive snake anti-venom.
“Each vile is very expensive and it takes more than one vile, so not all facilities are able to stock it,” Fitz said. “It’s not unusual for one snake bite to require 10 viles or more.”
In the case of the toddler, Dr. Fitz said snake bites are more dangerous for children and the elderly.
“The younger the victim, the more comorbidity can happen due to a lack of defenses,” Fitz said.
He warns residents in rural communities to beware of rattlers in the areas because of heavy vegetation.
“Don’t try to suck out their venom, don’t try to cut open the area, it’s a myth and it’s very dangerous and if you have lesions in your mouth you will absorb and venom as well,” Fitz said.