Man bitten by venomous snake recovering
HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (WSVN) -- A South Florida man is recalling the frightening moments after he was bit by a venomous snake in his back yard.
Robert Houghson said he is lucky to be alive after he was bitten by a venomous coral snake last Tuesday. "Numb from here down, but inside there's a burning," he said.
Houghson's lower leg is swollen and purple almost a week after the snake bit him. He said the snake bit him on his foot when he went outside to check his AC unit. "I walked outside without shoes on," he said. "It was a horrible burning."
Houghson, a retired paramedic, said the small red, black and yellow colored snake latched on to his foot. He shook his leg and the snake went flying. The venom made it's way into his blood stream, instantly. "It felt like someone took a hot poker and just stuck it in me," he said. "It's very painful."
Houghson notified police and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue's Venom Response Bureau administered five vials of antivenin into his veins. "My tongue started swelling, it was instant," he said.
Memorial Regional Hospital Dr. Heidi Cohens said coral snake bites could be deadly if not treated immediately. "Neurotoxic venom that can cause pain, swelling at the site as well as neurological symptoms; it can paralyze the respiratory muscles," she said.
Doctors told him Tropical Storm Isaac's rains have brought out the coral snake and fire rescued said around 80 of the 100 coral snakes bites per year in the U.S. happen in Florida.
Houghson will continue to recover at Memorial Regional Hospital until he is released.
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