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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 21-27

Snakebite in Saudi Arabia: A public health risk needs to be re-visited


1 National Egyptian Center for Toxicological Researches, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt; Poison Control and Forensic Chemistry Center, Northern Borders Directorate of Health Affairs, Ministry of Health, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Inventory control Tabuk Directorate of Health Affairs, Ministry of Health, Saudi Arabia
3 Regional Laboratory, Northern Borders Directorate of Health Affairs, Ministry of Health, Saudi Arabia
4 Poison Control and Forensic Chemistry Center, Northern Borders Directorate of Health Affairs, Ministry of Health, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Ahmed Salah Eldin Gouda
6771 Makkah Street, Mansouria, Arar

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/sjfms.sjfms_5_20

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Snakebite envenoming is a neglected tropical disease causing a global public health risk. The real magnitude of this risk in Saudi Arabia could not be fully identified, together with the reported prevalence of highly venomous snakes. This study reviews the reported prevalence, clinical manifestations, and treatment plans of local snakebite victims from the published data on the main electronic databases in the last 20 years. The search resulted in a total of nine studies. All the included published studies collected their data within the time frame from 1983 to 2010, and located in only four governments of Saudi Arabia. The most common snakes identified were Cerastes cerastes and Echis coloratus, and most of the included cases showed coagulopathy. Different types of antivenom were used in the included studies with no stated treatment protocol. Our study concluded that there is a necessity for approaching a nation-wide survey study on the prevalence of snakebite injury with generalization of an evidence-based treatment protocol for management of snakebite victims.


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