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the race to find universal antivenom



In Nigeria's Snake Belt, the new initiative is welcome but will not come anything like enough time for many.

May and June are the peak season for the clinic, when the start of the farming season leads to workers bitten while they are clearly pasture and bush areas. Once a dozen patients come daily, some even over the border with neighboring Cameroon, nearly 200 miles away.

Clinics come in contact with major anti-venoms, offered free of charge and usually see recovery within a few days. However, many victims remain in their homes, who are confident in traditional remedies such as wounds in the skin, or opening them in hopelessly "bleeding" toxicity.

One of these cases was Emmanuel Samuel, 1

2, who bitten the foot of a carpet viper four nights ago while playing. The creature was hiding his foot with its puppies, meaning it probably delivered a full dose of venom, but in the first 12 hours, her grandmother treated her by feeding her garlic.

"Fortunately a member of our own staff was happily living in his village, and when they learned that they told him to come here immediately," said Dr. Muhammad, as he examined Emmanuel's foot. Even if the inflammation is falling, it is covered with blisters and wounds, while the remaining skin is shiny and weak as the clingfilm.

"By the time he got here, he could barely speak," he added. Muhammad. "If he stayed at home, he died."

In 2017, the Caltungo clinic cured some 4,400 patients, one percent of those who died, said Professor Abdulrazaq Habib, another clinic medicine.

] Occasionally, there are logistical problems also in the supply of antivenom. Dr Muhummad said a shortage of two weeks in the last fall allowed some patients to turn back, some of which he released after they died.

Locals can also do more education on the risks of using traditional medicine: "We tell them that herbal healing is useless, but people do not always listen," he said. .

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