Snakes kill over 6,000 Bangladeshis every year: study | world | Hindustan Times
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Snakes kill over 6,000 Bangladeshis every year: study

world Updated: Aug 08, 2009 14:03 IST
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Over 6,041 die from snake bites every year in Bangladesh against a global statistics of some 150,000 deaths, a report said here today quoting a nationwide survey carried out by the directorate general of health.

At least 623 people in every 100,000 population or nearly six lakh people in the country are bitten by snakes every year, while the previous reports suggested that only 2,000 died every year while some 10,000 were exposed to snakebites, Prothom Alo newspaper said citing the report.

The study carried out with World Bank assistance in collaboration with Australia's New Castle University found the phenomenon to be an "old and ignored public health problem" as 86 per cent snakebite victims still report to 'ojhas' or traditional healers.

The study identified the southwestern coastal Barisal division as the most snakebite prone area. 27 per cent victims were bitten while walking on roads and another 27 per cent were exposed to snakes while they took dips in water bodies.

Experts said 80 species of snakes with 22 of them being venomous are found in Bangladesh.

According to a global statistics some 30 lakh people are bitten every year and of them 150,000 die while South Asia, Southeast Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa report the highest number of cases.

Bites from non-venomous snakes could also cause injury, often due to lacerations caused by the snake's fangs, or from a resulting infection. A bite may also trigger an anaphylactic reaction, which is potentially fatal, study said.