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Wilderness Environ Med. 2016 Jun;27(2):277-81. doi: 10.1016/j.wem.2016.02.003. Epub 2016 Apr 23.

Traumatic Amputation of Finger From an Alligator Snapping Turtle Bite.

Author information

1
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, The Children's Hospital, Section of Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Oklahoma City, OK. Electronic address: bob-johnson@ouhsc.edu.
2
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, The Children's Hospital, Section of Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Oklahoma City, OK.

Abstract

Legend states that the alligator snapping turtle (Macrochelys temminckii) should be handled with extreme caution as it has jaw strength powerful enough to bite a wooden broomstick in half. Tales of bite injuries from what is the largest freshwater turtle in North America exist anecdotally, yet there are few descriptions of medical encounters for such. The risk of infection from reptilian bites to the hand in an aquatic environment warrants thorough antibiotic treatment in conjunction with hand surgery consultation. We present the first case report of a near total amputation of an index finger in an adolescent boy who had been bitten by a wild "gator snapper."

KEYWORDS:

amputation; animal bites; postexposure prophylaxis; turtles

PMID:
27116923
DOI:
10.1016/j.wem.2016.02.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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