A man was left with a finger resembling an eggplant (an aubergine for those who speak the Queen’s) after he ignored a rattlesnake bite while working.
Austin McGee had never seen a venomous snake before he was bitten in his yard in Franklin, Tennessee, last week.
The gardener was bitten after picking up some metal, but said the bite felt like nothing more than a sting, so he decided to just leave it.
But things took a turn for the worse when Austin’s finger swelled to the size of a lemon within just a few days. He’d suffered such a severe infection that he almost had to have the finger amputated.
Speaking to Fox17, Austin explained:
It was just kind of a freak accident.
I heard something, it sounded like a faint little rattle.
[I thought it] must just be a bug or something because it wasn’t that loud.
I honestly never thought that a rattlesnake bite wasn’t that big of a deal.
But things continued to escalate for Austin, after popping the wound, which had grown to resemble an eggplant.
It progressively kept getting worse and then they popped it and it went back down and then the skin around it kept coming off.
It was like a throbbing, it was beating with my heart every time.
Doctors were able to treat his wound by draining the blood that had filled his finger, and they now believe he will make a full recovery.
However, Austin is now using his terrifying ordeal to warn others to be more alert and take precautions to make sure they don’t fall victim to venomous snake bites.
He warned: ‘Just watch out, watch your step, and don’t pick stuff up unless you kick around it and look around it.’
According to Health Direct, anyone who gets bitten by a venomous snake should:
Apply a pressure immobilisation bandage and keep the person calm and as still as possible until medical help arrives. Avoid washing the bite area because any venom left on the skin can help identify the snake. DO NOT apply a tourniquet, cut the wound or attempt to suck the venom out.
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Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining the LADbible Group team in 2017.