"Centipede bite kills pregnant woman and baby"

Draiman

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An interesting, albeit tragic, news story I came across today.

KUALA SELANGOR: A bite from a centipede's fangs is believed to have caused the death of a seven-month pregnant woman and her unborn child.

Azlina Saian, 33, had thought that she was bitten by an ant as she laid on
the floor watching television with her husband at their home in Kampung
Tanjung Siam Baru on Dec 29.

Thinking that it was only a minor ant bite, her husband Abdul Rahman Samad,
37, told her to apply some ointment.

It was only when Azlina's face started to swell that Abdul Rahman became
worried.

By midnight, four hours after the incident, Azlina was running a high fever.

The odd-job worker later discovered a small centipede among the pillows
where Azlina had been lying down earlier but thought nothing of it.

However, Azlina's condition worsened over the next two days and she started to bleed from the gums on New Year's Day.

"I rushed her to the Tanjung Karang Hospital but on the way there, she said
she could feel our baby slipping away," he said.

Their worst fears were confirmed when doctors told them that the foetus was
dead.

Azlina was transferred to Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah (HTAR) in Klang for
further treatment but her condition continued to deteriorate.

"She was bleeding from the nose and under her fingernails and even a blood
transfusion could not help."

Abdul Rahman said doctors induced the foetus which appeared swollen.

HTAR director Dr Yahaya Baba said that the victim died of septicaemia (blood
poisoning) and shock.
From: http://sgforums.com/forums/8/topics/236542
 

JC

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Hmm, I wonder how big Azlina Saian was.
 

Moltar

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Holy smokes! That's intense. Too bad they didn't collect the cent to get it identified, of course that may not be as much of an option in Singapore.

That's a tragic story though, sucks for the family!
 

zonbonzovi

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Bleeding from under the fingernails? I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that there are a number of things that may have contributed to their deaths that are non-centipede related. The symptoms don't really match up with the little med. info. that's been published on centipede bites. Gavin, if you see any follow up info. on this story, I'd love to see it.

Maybe a secondary infection...I'm not sure of the time frame involved, but that would be incredibly fast acting.
 

Julia

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Possibly some sort of severe allergy to the venom? But, since she said it felt like an ant bite, that centipede must have been very small. Therefore, it couldn't have dumped too much venom. Maybe the venom was just enough to kill her fetus, and the blood poisoning came as a result of the dead fetus inside her?
 

Draiman

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The swelling of the face seems to be a symptom of anaphylactic shock, or at least an allergic reaction of some sort, no?

Gavin, if you see any follow up info. on this story, I'd love to see it.
Will do.
 

micheldied

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Man that sucks.
But this discussion is pretty interesting... I didn't think someone would bleed under her finger nails from the effects centipede venom.
 

JC

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The swelling of the face seems to be a symptom of anaphylactic shock, or at least an allergic reaction of some sort, no?
Only if it were a allergic reaction, the swelling would not only have happened the face, but the rest of the body as well.

My guess is that upon the breakage of red blood cells throughout the body, it caused an increase in blood volume creating the said blood spills. If she was laying down during that time, then that would explain the swollen face. Similar to puffy head bird leg syndrome in astronauts.
 

Draiman

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My guess is that upon the breakage of red blood cells throughout the body, it caused an increase in blood volume creating the said blood spills. If she was laying down during that time, then that would explain the swollen face. Similar to puffy head bird leg syndrome in astronauts.
That presents us another question: does centipede venom have cytotoxic compounds in it? I remember reading somewhere about Scolopendra heros having cytotoxic venom, and if that is true, I wouldn't be surprised if the same components are present in other species within the genus.
 
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Greg Pelka

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Anaphylactic shock will kill her in few hours.
Probably bacterial infecion -> sepsis -> multi-organ insufficiency and DIC.
 

Travis K

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Really with out more hard data on the victim we are wasting our time posting speculation. The realish conclusion(s) is that she (A)wasn't bit by a centipede at all, and died from something else. (B) was bitten by a centipede but cause of death was not directly linked/due envinomation but instead secondary causes, ie. domino effect. (C) The darn thing killed her, but this is probably the least likely answer given the odd symptoms the victim exhibited.

So until "we" have more data, which we likely wont, this will sit in the "WOW, that is weird, but how on earth?" area. The bottom line, we don't know and probably never will cause we would need more data to draw at least accurate conclusions.

Cheers,
 

JC

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Really with out more hard data on the victim we are wasting our time posting speculation.

....So until "we" have more data, which we likely wont, this will sit in the "WOW, that is weird, but how on earth?" area. The bottom line, we don't know and probably never will cause we would need more data to draw at least accurate conclusions.
The realish conclusion(s) is that she (A)wasn't bit by a centipede at all, and died from something else. (B) was bitten by a centipede but cause of death was not directly linked/due envinomation but instead secondary causes, ie. domino effect. (C) The darn thing killed her, but this is probably the least likely answer given the odd symptoms the victim exhibited.

Cheers,
lol, thanks for sharing Travis, and I agree. ;)
 

barabootom

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It sounds like just speculation that a centipede even bit her. Just finding one nearby means nothing. It could have been some small very venomous spider, and it could still be in the house.
 

Draiman

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It sounds like just speculation that a centipede even bit her. Just finding one nearby means nothing. It could have been some small very venomous spider, and it could still be in the house.
Name me one species of spider found in the Malaysia-Singapore region that is known to be dangerous to humans? :?
 

JC

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Name me one species of spider found in the Malaysia-Singapore region that is known to be dangerous to humans? :?
Yeah, I agree with Draimen. After barabootom's post I tried looking for such a spider, I couldn't find one. The real bad boys are in Australia, South and North America and Europe. It might have as well been a centipede.
 
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