Saturday, 27 February 2010

Bullrout Sting

Yesterday Littletree was stung by a Bullrout. Ouch! And before everyone asks:

It was horrible. I’ve never seen anyone in so much pain. Ever. The poor little thing. Honestly, I can’t even begin to explain how much pain she was in; it was excruciating just to look at.

The local home school kids were playing down by the creek in the village, Purple was there, and a few other parents, and I had just gone home for a nap, as I had a headache, when the phone rang – it was Purple calling to say Littletree had stepped on something, maybe a piece of glass, and could I come down with the car and bring the first aid kit.

So I grabbed the kit and dashed into the car. I arrived to find a huge crowd of kids surrounding Littletree, who was on Purple’s lap, screaming like I’ve never heard before. She was screaming that the pain was getting worse, going right up her leg, and I could see her foot was swelling.

Apparently no one knew exactly what had gotten her – might have been a snake, or maybe a “bullrush”. I scooped her up in my arms and got her into the car, with Purple close behind, and we rushed to the hospital.

We got to the ER and were brought right in (it’s a small hospital; only 5 beds in the ER). And lucky for us, all the doctors and nurses on duty at that time just happened to be foreigners, so none of them could diagnose that it was, indeed, a Bullrout sting (note the tell-tale 2mm long slit, which is duplicated about a centimetre away. note the excruciating pain).

49 bullrout sting

Littletree was absolutely beside herself with pain, and they all thought “snake bite” and so started doing a snakebite tox screen. Which meant taking bloods from her every 2 hours, and an overnight stay. Naturally, all the bloods came back negative for snakebite.

At some point, an orderly ambled by with a mop and said (with a thick local accent), “ow, that’s a Bullrout sting! Put ‘er in ‘ot water; she’ll be roight!”

50 bullrout sting

The doctor gave her a shot of morphine, which was, for me, terrible to see, and she calmed right down. duh. Then they listened to the orderly and put her foot in hot water, which (of course) helped a lot. But they still had to finish the snakebite protocol, because once it’s started, they’re in the system.

51 in hospital

So Littletree was admitted for the night, and we went up to the paediatric ward to wait out the snakebite bloods. I sent Purple home to get us some overnight things – in my hurry I’d gone out without my handbag or even shoes. And I got to enjoy a comfortable, pleasant night on a little fold-out bed next to Littletree.

Waking after about 4 hours of broken sleep, and feeling entirely refreshed and rested, I sat with Littletree, keeping her occupied till they came to discharge her.

Littletree was amazed to discover a Gideon’s Bible in the bedside drawer, which she read happily over her breakfast, which was “awesome, just like on the aeroplane!”

52 in hospital

At least the nurses in Paeds were really nice, and in the morning the ER doctor who had been on duty came up to check in on us. Finally, we were set free to go about our merry way, though poor Littletree’s foot is still swollen and painful to walk on; she’s just fine :)


  1. OUCH! Poor little love. I am glad to hear she is feeling a bit better. I had never heard of these creatures before.

  2. Poor girl! I'm glad she's feeling better.

  3. yowch, poor little love, I am glad she is revovering and MF and Purple too.

  4. Poor girl. I'm glad to hear that she's feeling better! Sounds really painful!

  5. Poor thing. Hope she's feeling better soon. It's awful seeing your child in so much pain. T was stung by a bee last year and I'd never heard her cry like it. It's so hard when there isn't anything you can do to make it stop.

  6. Porr thing! I've heard that they are soooooo painful.

  7. I hope she gets better

  8. Ouch! Poor baby! So glad it was not a snake but sorry she had to go through so much pain. Thanks for the link. I had never heard of them before. Hugs xxxx

  9. little thing...We are glad she is OK now though (well as Ok as she could be).It goes to show just how important local knowledge of an area and the dangers of the area is.Snake bite indeed...Now I might be wrong...but I thought a snake bite would be 2 small round holes not slits?But I may be wrong as I haven't had the luxury of seeing a snake bite.It must have been very frightening for all 3 of you.

  10. Wow! That's a tale and a half! Poor luv. I hope it's all better now xxx

  11. Hi :) I stumbled across this when googling for Bullrout stings. My middle girl seems to be have stung and we had a hospy trip too. A few folks have experienced stings from our community so we were blessed to have their knowledge of hot water for treatment, it definitely helped!

    Hope you are all happy and well.

    A xo

  12. Oh artymama! Sorry to hear your DD got a bullrout sting, they're so nasty!


Thanks for your lovely words, witty banter and entertaining discussion :)