First Treatment Solely for Scorpion Stings Approved

Poisonous arthropods found mostly in Arizona

THURSDAY, Aug. 4, 2011 (HealthDay News) -- Anascorp, the first injection devised solely to treat scorpion stings, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Venomous scorpions in the United States are primarily found in Arizona. Severe strings occur most often in babies and children, causing problems including shortness of breath, fluid in the lungs, difficulty breathing, increased saliva production, blurred vision and slurred speech, the agency said in a news release.

Since Anascorp is produced from the blood plasma of horses that have been immunized with scorpion venom, people who are sensitive to horse proteins may have an allergic reaction to the product, the FDA said. The manufacturing process includes steps designed to decrease the chances of an allergic reaction, and to thwart transmission of plasma-borne viruses, the agency added.

In clinical testing, Anascorp within four hours reduced neurological symptoms of scorpion stings among all eight children treated with the product. But neurological symptoms eased within four hours in only one of seven children who were given a placebo, the FDA said.

Reported side effects of Anascorp included vomiting, fever, rash, nausea, itchiness, headache, runny nose and muscle pain.

Anascorp is licensed to Tennessee-based Rare Disease Therapeutics, is distributed by Tennessee-based Accredo Health Group, and is manufactured by Mexico-based Instituto Bioclon.

More information

To learn more about scorpion stings, visit Medline Plus.

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