From Nick Sacco, Brumley, MO
I read your recent article about copperheads and found it very interesting and informing. My wife and I moved to Brumley, Missouri in October 2013 and purchased a 175-year-old home. One of the first warnings we received was to watch out for copperheads, as they are thick around our property.
Right at the beginning of this summer I went into my wood shop to do a minor task. I was wearing water shoes, which have several open slits in the toe. I finished my job and we left to drive to Osage Beach. After a few minutes I told my wife that my foot hurt and I wondered if I had stubbed my toe in the wood shop. Please note the wood shop is probably 100 years old and has openings in the wood around the floor to the outside everywhere.
It so happened I was seeing my doctor for a minor thing but while there asked her to examine my foot. At that time my right toe was bright red and swollen. The doctor prescribed me antibiotics, wrapped my foot up and sent me home. Before my wife could drive to the pharmacy I was physically sick. Running a temperature, nauseous, my leg was hot up to the thigh and now I had huge red streaks shooting up my right leg. We turned around and drove straight to the ER. The attending physician there found one fang mark in the underside of my big toe and confirmed it was snakebite. He asked if I had saw the snake and I had to honestly say I neither felt it bite me or saw it. A local conversation agent told me he suspected that I had stepped on snake in the wood shop and it had struck back and up at my foot piercing one of the slits in the toe of my shoe.
I was on IV's and in the hospital for six days. The first few days I was in the ICU. The doctors would come in and see me and tell me that I was still in the "Danger Zone." After a week I went home but had continued wound care for about two months.
So the moral to this long drawn out story is that copperheads are very, very dangerous. I am so thankful we were near the hospital and able to get quick medical treatment. I also NEVER go outside with out boots on anymore.
Thank you for your article.