Do we need anti snake venom (ASV) for management of elapid ophitoxaemia

J Assoc Physicians India. 1996 Jan;44(1):31-3.


Twelve patients of elapid ophitoxaemia presented with neuromuscular paralytic features were given anticholinesterase (Neostigmine) in recommended dosage. In four of these patients, despite neuromuscular paralysis, no ASV was used. All these four patients survived. In eight patients, ASV was used; in three of whom it used in doses less than 50 units, yet patients survived. Of the remaining five, despite use of ASV in higher doses (more than 50 units), two succumbed to death. Eight patients required ventilatory support. Hence, in absence of any definite role of ASV in management of elapid ophitoxaemia (snake bite), use of anticholinesterase drugs alone, with good supportive care and prevention of likely complications, can result in satisfactory outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Antivenins / administration & dosage
  • Antivenins / therapeutic use*
  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors / administration & dosage
  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Elapid Venoms / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Elapidae*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • India
  • Male
  • Neostigmine / administration & dosage
  • Neostigmine / therapeutic use
  • Neuromuscular Diseases / drug therapy
  • Neuromuscular Diseases / therapy
  • Paralysis / drug therapy
  • Paralysis / therapy
  • Respiration, Artificial
  • Snake Bites / drug therapy
  • Snake Bites / therapy*
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antivenins
  • Cholinesterase Inhibitors
  • Elapid Venoms
  • Neostigmine