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Snake Bite Leaves Canadian Man Weeping Bloody Tears

Update Date: Mar 22, 2013 05:50 PM EDT
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A bite from a venomous Costa Rican snake left a Canadian man weeping tears of blood.

A 61-year-old Vancouver native was attacked by a poisonous snake early this week during his night stroll on a Costa Rican beach.  Later, he quickly developed symptoms ranging from painful swelling of his leg to kidney failure, according to The Canadian Press.

The man was rushed to a medical clinic in Costa Rica, but had be flown home after because language barrier prevented him from receiving needed care, according to the Globe and Mail.

Dr. Roy Purssell, the director of the B.C. Drug and Poison Information Center in Canada told The Canadian Press that the snake venom also causes major problems with blood clotting.

"So the patient was having bleeding from various areas, and his tears actually had turned to blood," he said.

After examining all the man's symptoms, doctors at the Vancouver General Hospital later identified the culprit snake as a venomous pitviper called the Bothrops snake.

Purssell said him and his team then found that the closest place where there was an antidote for the snake bite was at a zoo in Seattle, Washington.  Afterwards, they made arrangements for the antidote to be picked up by an air ambulance helicopter.

"We had sorted out which snake it likely was and the location of the anti-venom by about noon that day and the patient was actually given the anti-venom by just after six o'clock, so we were actually pretty impressed by (the speed of the response)," Purssell said.

After the ailing man received the antidote, his symptoms improved almost immediately, said Purssell.

"The abnormalities and blood clotting were starting to resolve within minutes. They were dramatically better within a couple of hours, and almost back to normal within a few hours after that," Purssell said.

Apparently the man didn't even know a snake had bitten him, so the medical team had to work even harder to find the reason behind his sudden symptoms.

Purssell said the man is now in stable condition.  However, Purssell warned that the snake bite may leave the man with some permanent kidney damage.

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