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Med J Aust. 1992 Dec 7-21;157(11-12):746-7.

Quokka bites. The first report of bites from an Australian marsupial.

Author information

1
Department of Emergency Medicine, Fremantle Hospital, WA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To describe the incidence and natural history of bites from the quokka, a small wallaby.

DESIGN:

A prospective case series.

SETTING:

Rottnest Island Nursing Post, a small hospital staffed by registered nurses on call 24 hours a day, located on Rottnest Island 18 km off the coast of Western Australia near Perth.

PATIENTS:

All patients presenting after a bite from a quokka.

RESULTS:

Seventy-two patients (30 males and 42 females) presented after a bite. All but two patients were patting or feeding a quokka at the time of being bitten, and all but two were bitten on a finger or the thumb. Sixty-one per cent of patients were followed up; all wounds healed without complications. No wound pathogens were cultured from either wound swabs or swabs of the mouths of quokkas.

CONCLUSIONS:

Bites from quokkas heal without complications, usually in two to three weeks. Simple first aid and tetanus prophylaxis where appropriate are all that is required. Antibiotics are not indicated.

PMID:
1453997
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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