Epidemiological Analysis of Antivenin Usage in Taiwan Area, 2002-2005
2009 Vol.25 NO.7
Correspondence Author： Chien-Hsin Liu
Antivenin is the main drug used to treat snake bites; therefore, this study attempts to analyze national health insurance data in order to understand the use of antivenin in Taiwan. The study uses the Bureau of National Health Insurance database, including antivenin used for Protobothrops mucrosquamatus and Trimeresurus stejnegeri stejnegeri (FH), for Naja naja atra and Bungarus multicinctus multicinctus (FN), and for Deinagkistrodon acutus (FA) in hospitals, for description and analysis.
The study results show that the use of antivenin in outpatient to hospitalized case ratio is 1.91:1.00. In average, 1,052±85 outpatients apply for the use of antivenin each year with averages of 2.07±0.15 vials for FH, 2.23±0.21 vials for FN, and 1.62±0.19 vials for FA. A total of 2,018 hospitalized patients (3,028 times) applied for the use of antivenin with averages of 2.64±0.34 vials for FH, 3.35±0.78 for FN, and 2.83±0.40 for FA. Outpatients and hospitalized patients have a percentage of 8.7% and 8.0% who used two or more antivenin at the same time.
Among outpatients and hospitalized patients, the antivenin most used is for Protobothrops mucrosquamatus and Trimeresurus stejnegeri stejnegeri, followed by the antivenin used for Naja naja atra and Bungarus multicinctus multicinctus as second and the Deinagkistrodon acutus as third. The amount of antivenin used has increased over the years and the status of outpatients and hospitalized patients needing antivenin can be used for further reference in producing antivenin.
Keywords: snake bites, antivenin, epidemiology