Incidence of allergic reactions to Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab

Moteb Khobrani, Yvonne Huckleberry, Keith J. Boesen, Ahmed Aljabri, Mobarak Alharthi, Asad E. Patanwala

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Context: The administration of Crotalidae polyvalent immune Fab (FabAV) currently requires close observation, so patients can be monitored for hypersensitivity reactions. The objective of this study was to evaluate the occurrence of hypersensitivity reactions to FabAV. Method: This was a retrospective cohort study utilizing data from a statewide poison center database in the United States. Records of all patients envenomated by a rattlesnake and treated with FabAV between January 2002 and December 2014 were evaluated. Patients with acute hypersensitivity reactions were identified, and reactions were evaluated descriptively. Results: A total of 1340 adult and pediatric patients received FabAV during the study period. Of these, 19 (1.4%) patients had a potential reaction to FabAV, with 10 requiring a reduction in infusion rate, but none requiring discontinuation of the antivenom. Reactions occurred during the loading dose (n = 10), maintenance doses (n = 4), or were delayed reactions (n = 6). Symptoms recorded included pruritus (n = 8), hives (n = 8), rash (n = 7), vomiting (n = 7), nausea (n = 6), dyspnea or wheezing (n = 4), diaphoresis (n = 3), throat irritation (n = 2), and mild hypotension (n = 2). One patient was given a concomitant administration of low dose epinephrine infusion until completion of the antivenom course. However, none of the reactions were considered to be life-threatening. Conclusion: FabAV appears to be associated with a low incidence of acute hypersensitivity reactions. Patients may not require placement in a location capable of detecting and rapidly responding to hemodynamic and/or airway issues for FabAV monitoring alone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)164-167
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Toxicology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 4 2019


  • (MeSH): antivenins
  • critical care
  • drug-related side effects and adverse reactions
  • hypersensitivity
  • intensive care units
  • snake bites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology


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