Health News

Mississippi toddler suffers copperhead snakebite

A Mississippi toddler was hospitalized this week after being bitten by a copperhead snake.
A Mississippi toddler was hospitalized this week after being bitten by a copperhead snake. The Clarion-Ledger

A Hamilton toddler was bitten by a venomous snake and hospitalized earlier this week.

According to WTVA news, Ivy Rose, 18 months, was bitten by a small copperhead snake after stepping on it outside her home Tuesday evening.

“We were walking to our car at our home to go to church,” Rose’s mother, Charity Glass, told the television station. “I was holding Ivy’s hand and she stopped and started screaming.”

The child was airlifted to a Jackson hospital and treated with anti-venom. According to WTVA, Rose has since been released.

Dr. Robert Cox, the Director of the Mississippi Poison Control Center and professor at University Medical Center, has seen his share of snake bites. He said there are roughly 100 bites treated in Mississippi annually.

In an earlier interview, Cox told The Clarion-Ledger that children are most often bitten on the feet or ankles because they tend to step on snakes. In adults, he said most bites occur on or near the hands.

If bitten by a venomous snake, Cox said it’s more about what not to do rather than what to do.

“Don’t put a tourniquet on it,” Cox said. “Don’t put ice on it. Don’t cut it. Don’t suck it.”

He also warned against using any snakebite kit that instructs the user to cut the affected area.

“Most people who use one of those and use the scalpel or razor blades are going to do more damage than the snake bite,” Cox said.

He also pointed out that medical professionals do not need to see the offending snake — particularly alive — as attempting to catch or kill the animal can result in another bite.

His advice on what should be done in the event of a venomous snake bite is simple.

“You need to keep it in a neutral position as much as possible,” Cox said. “If it’s on your leg, don’t keep it hanging down.”

Obviously, the same would apply to a bite on a hand or arm.

He also said the victim should seek medical attention quickly.