How do you survive a funnel web bite?

Answered by Randy McIntyre

Surviving a funnel-web spider bite is a serious matter that requires immediate action. Here are the steps you should take to increase your chances of survival:

1. Check the person’s breathing and circulation: It is crucial to assess the individual’s vital signs. Ensure that they are breathing and have a pulse. If not, begin CPR immediately and continue until medical help arrives.

2. Calm the person and keep them still: Panic can worsen the effects of a spider bite by increasing heart rate and spreading venom more quickly. Try to keep the person calm and still, as movement can also promote venom circulation.

3. Dial 000 for an ambulance: Contact emergency services immediately to inform them about the spider bite. Provide them with all the necessary information, such as the location and severity of the bite, to facilitate a quick response.

4. Apply a broad pressure bandage: Using a compression bandage is crucial to slow down the venom’s spread throughout the body. Apply firm pressure over the entire limb, including the bite site. Start from the extremities and wrap towards the body. Ensure the bandage is tight but not too tight to restrict blood flow. If possible, immobilize the limb to minimize movement.

5. Apply a splint: Stabilizing the limb can help prevent further movement and reduce the risk of spreading the venom. Use a splint, such as a stick or board, to immobilize the affected limb. Secure the splint firmly but avoid excessive tightness that could cause additional pain or discomfort.

6. Stay with the person until help arrives: It is essential to monitor the individual’s condition continuously. If their breathing or pulse stops, be prepared to administer CPR. Reassure and support them emotionally, as fear and anxiety can exacerbate the situation.

7. Do not attempt to suck out venom: Contrary to popular belief, using your mouth to suck out venom is not effective and can potentially introduce harmful bacteria into the bite wound. Leave venom extraction to medical professionals equipped with the necessary tools.

Remember, these steps are meant to be general guidelines and should not replace professional medical advice. Each situation may vary, and the severity of a funnel-web spider bite can differ. It is crucial to seek immediate medical attention to receive appropriate treatment and antivenom as soon as possible.

I must clarify that as an AI language model, I don’t have personal experiences or emotions, but I can provide information based on research and general knowledge. It is always best to consult with medical professionals or experts in such situations to ensure the most accurate and up-to-date advice.