Berg adder (Bitis atropos) : an unusual case of acute poisoning

Wium, C. A. ; Marks, C. J. ; Du Plessis, C. E. ; Muller, G. J. (2017)

CITATION: Wium, C. A., et al. 2017. Berg adder (Bitis atropos) : an unusual case of acute poisoning. South African Medical Journal, 107(12):1075-1077, doi:10.7196/SAMJ.2017.v107i12.12763.

The original publication is available at http://www.samj.org.za/index.php/samj

Article

A 5-year-old boy presented to hospital with mild local cytotoxic and severe neurotoxic symptoms. The neurotoxic symptoms included ptosis, fixed dilated pupils and flaccid paralysis with respiratory failure. Mild hyponatraemia was also a clinical feature. After various unsuccessful treatment options were followed, the Tygerberg Poison Information Centre was contacted and a diagnosis of berg adder bite was made. Berg adder bites are uncommon and therefore not usually considered in the differential diagnosis of a patient presenting with an unexplained clinical picture. A timeous poison information helpline consultation is recommended in this situation.

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