How poisonous is the lionfish?

Lionfish carry a deadly poison in their spines. Lionfish are not poisonous, they are venomous. The difference between poison and venom is the method of delivery. Venom must be injected into the bloodstream to cause injury, such as through a sharp spine or fang, but is harmless if drunk or eaten.

First Aid Essentials after a Lionfish Sting

First aid is essential in preventing infections; clean the wound, control the pain and apply topical antibiotics using these easy-to-follow steps:

Wash the area thoroughly with soap and fresh water.

Remove any foreign material.

Control bleeding, if necessary.

Control the pain: Immerse the affected area in the hottest water tolerable without causing injury (the upper limit is 113°F / 45°C) for 30 to 90 minutes. Repeat as needed. Test the water on the same area as the injury to ensure it is not too hot; intense pain may impair one’s ability to discriminate between hot and scalding.

Ice/cold packs can also be used to provide relief and reduce swelling

Apply topical antibiotic ointment or cream.

Apply bandaging as needed.

If necessary, administer pain-control medications.
Seek a professional medical evaluation as medical management may include sedatives, tetanus vaccination and antibiotics. Advanced life support may be required in rare instances.

Call an emergency or the local equivalent and the DAN Emergency Hotline.

By : Tamer M. Hussein


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