Relaxation incisions of venomous snake "Japanese mamushi" bites to the hand
Akira Sugamata, Naoki Yoshizawa, Takahiro Okada
Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Tokyo Medical University Hachioji Medical Center, Tokyo, Japan
Abstract: Gloydius blomhoffii, commonly known as Japanese mamushi, is a venomous viper species found widely in Japan. The most frequently bitten regions are the fingers and toes, and severe swelling causes compression of peripheral arteries and/or compartment syndrome of the extremities. We experienced four cases of mamushi bites to the hand, and undertook relaxation incision in the hands of three of these patients. As a result, the patients who underwent relaxation incision did not show any skin necrosis or permanent sensory disturbance in the affected fingers. Relaxation incision can be useful to not only decompress subcutaneous and compartment pressure of the hand, but also to wash out the venom from the bitten region by improving venous and lymphatic drainage.
Keywords: mamushi, snakebite, viper, relaxation incision
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