Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

p. 46-59

Cardiopulmonary complications induced by Iranian Mesobuthus eupeus scorpion venom in anesthetized rabbits

Zayerzadeh, EKoohi, M. KZare Mirakabadi, APurkabireh, MKassaaian, S. ERabbani, S. HSotoudeh Anvari, MBoroumand, M. ASadeghian, S

Scorpion envenomation is a life-threatening condition, especially in children and elderly individuals affected by respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. In this study, the toxic effects of median lethal dose (LD50) injections of Mesobuthus eupeus (Me) venom on the heart and lungs of anesthetized rabbits were investigated. Six rabbits were selected and alterations in their electrocardiogram, heart rate, respiration and blood pressure before and after venom injection were recorded. Cardiac troponin T (cTnT), creatinine kinase muscle-brain fraction (CK-MB) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) were measured at 0, 1 and 3 hours after envenomation and pathology studies were carried out postmortem. All the animals showed signs and symptoms of envenomation within 40 minutes and died 3 to 3.5 hours after venom injection. Pathology studies revealed alveolar edema in 100 percent of the rabbits and myocardial infarction in 16 percent. The main histopathological changes were myocytolysis, coagulation necrosis, focal hemorrhage, thrombus formation both in myocardium and on endocardial surfaces as well as inflammatory infiltrates in the heart and hemorrhage, vascular thrombus and interstitial inflammation in the lungs. ECG monitoring of rabbits showed ST elevation, ST depression and inverted T and Q waves. In addition, although cTnT levels increased in 16 percent of the animals and serum LDH was also augmented, none of these changes was statistically significant. The enzyme CK-MB also did not show any change after Me venom injection. In conclusion, the results of this study showed that Me venom killed animals in less than 3.5 hours through severe pulmonary damage and it appears that the deaths could not be attributed to cardiovascular lesions. Therefore, Me venom effects on the lungs are so important that they appear to be independent of heart damage.(AU)

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