A SEVEN-year-old boy is finally home after spending nearly a week in the hospital recovering from a venomous snake bite.
Elijah Bustamante spent four days in the intensive care unit at Wolfson Children’s Hospital during a season when snakes are most active in Florida.
“He had seven bags of antidote. He had to get a feeding tube. He hasn’t eaten for four days,” said the boy’s mother, Sanita Bustamante.
He’s still in a bit of pain, but compared to when he arrived at the hospital, Elijah is doing much better.
However, the recovery process will take some time.
Although he is unable to walk at the moment, Elijah undergoes physical therapy to regain strength in the leg he was bitten on.
It was June 3 that Elijah was bitten outside his home in Green Cove Springs, the family told News4JAX.
“I was playing in the backyard and wanted to pick up a rock and the snake jumped out and bit me,” Elijah said.
He was taken to the hospital with an extremely swollen leg from the large bite.
Doctors believe the snake that jumped out and bit Elijah may have been a poisonous water moccasin.
“He said like a dark gray with dark spots and a thick head. A lot of doctors would answer their phones and pull out others, and every time he picked one, it was the waterman,” the boy’s mother said.
According to the Florida Poison Control Center, 40 patients in Northeast Florida have reported bites so far this year.
According to spokesman Mike McCormick, the patients range in age from three to 75 and are urging people to call the poison control center and seek medical attention immediately if bitten by a snake.
“Please don’t eat where the snake bit,” he said. “Please don’t try to catch the snake. If it’s safe and you can take a picture, that’s fine, but please don’t try to catch them. Please don’t try to cut the wound and suck the poison out.”
Elijah is still complaining about the pain in his leg, but he’s in a much better mood now.
His family avoids the backyard as the snake was not caught.
“My message would be… it can happen. Definitely, we’re in Florida, they’re everywhere. Just be careful,” said Sanita Bustamante.
Keep in mind that only six of the 44 native snake species are venomous, including coral snakes, water moccasin, copperhead and diamondback, pygmy and timber rattlesnakes.
But if you’re bitten by a snake, McCormick said, even if you don’t know the species, you should get help right away.
“Do not wait. Sometimes people aren’t sure when they’re bitten by a snake, and actually we can’t identify some of the bites this year because people never saw it,” he said.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/5563727/florida-boy-venomous-snake-bite-recovery/ 7-year-old boy was unable to walk after being bitten by a venomous snake, with SEVEN sachets of anti-venom being administered over 4 days in intensive care