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A Case of Neurotoxicity Following Envenomation by the Sidewinder Rattlesnake, Crotalus cerastes



North American rattlesnake envenomations typically result in local tissue injury and hematologic derangements. Neurotoxicity is uncommon but when present often manifests as fasciculations and paresthesias. Neurotoxicity following Sidewinder (Crotalus cerastes) envenomation has not been previously reported.

Case Report

A 56-year-old man bitten on the right foot developed painful paresthesias, weakness and fasciculations of the right lower extremity, and involuntary muscle contractions of the anterior thigh. Local tissue effects and hemotoxicity never developed. The patient was discharged 5 days after the bite with resolution of fasciculations but continued to have right-sided weakness. The snake was identified as a Sidewinder, C. cerastes, by the patient and two independent herpetologists.


This is the first reported case of a Sidewinder rattlesnake envenomation resulting in neurotoxicity.

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Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Adam R. Bosak.

Electronic supplementary material

Online Resource 1

Fasciculations of the anterior thigh following envenomation by a Sidewinder rattlesnake (Crotalus cerastes) (MOV 13094 kb)

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Bosak, A.R., Ruha, AM. & Graeme, K.A. A Case of Neurotoxicity Following Envenomation by the Sidewinder Rattlesnake, Crotalus cerastes . J. Med. Toxicol. 10, 229–231 (2014).

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  • Neurotoxicity
  • Sidewinder
  • Rattlesnake
  • Crotalus cerastes
  • Envenomation