Study objectives: We tested the null hypothesis that no outcome differences exist among the treatment groups of animals with brown recluse spider envenomations.
Study design: A prospective, placebo-controlled, experimental trial. Hartley guinea pigs were randomized into the following treatment groups: dapsone, Parali/azer stun gun, Guardian stun gun, and control.
Interventions: Brown recluse spider skin lesions were induced with intradermal injections of 30 micrograms spider venom and were treated beginning 16 hours after inoculation. Shock regimens consisted of four cross shocks of 1-second duration on anesthetized animals. Oral dapsone treatment was 0.7 mg/kg twice daily for 3 days. Lesion areas were measured daily for 3 days.
Results: The dapsone therapy group demonstrated significantly less induration and necrosis (P < .05) than that shown by the other three groups 72 hours after envenomation.
Conclusion: Dapsone therapy is more effective than either electric shock or no therapy for brown recluse spider envenomation in the guinea pig model.