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Abstract - The effects of snake venom on serum copper, zinc and magnesium levels in patients with snake bite
Cemal Ustun, Ibrahim Tegin, Mehmet Faruk Geyik

Objective: Envenoming resulting from snakebites is a common devastating problem that is frequently seen in eastern and southeastern regions of Turkey. This aim of this study is to observe the changes of snake venom on serum copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and magnesium (Mg) levels in patients with snakebite.

Materials and Methods: Patients with snakebite and healthy individuals as control group were included in the study. Overall 10 ml venous blood sample was taken from each study individuals. Serum trace elements were measured using an atomic absorption spectrophotometer.

Results: Forty patients with snakebite and 80 healthy individuals in the control group were included in the study. The mean age of the patients with snakebite was 40.1 ±12 years; of these, 18 were male (45%). The mean age of the 80 healthy individuals was 40.6 ±10 years; of these, 36 were male (45%). Serum Cu, Zn, and Mg levels of patients with snakebite were 75.8 ±20.9, 86.9 ±25.2, and 1201 ±562 μg/dL, respectively. Serum Cu, Zn, and Mg levels of healthy individuals were 57.6 ±17.2, 55.8 ±12.4, and 1454 ±278 μg/dL, respectively. There were statistically significant increas­ing in serum Cu and Zn levels (p<0.001), and decreasing in serum Mg levels (p=0.001) in patients with snakebite when compared to healthy individuals.

Conclusion: Snake venom produces significant alterations on serum Cu, Zn, and Mg levels in patients with snakebite. Investigating of these changes caused by snake venom through further studies may provide novel developments in the treatment of patients with snakebite. J Microbiol Infect Dis 2013; 3(2): 71-74

Key words: Snakebite, snake venom, copper, zinc, magnesium

Volume 03, Number 02 (2013)