Coral Snake Bite Survivor’s Slow Recovery

HOLLYWOOD (CBS4) – A Miramar man is still unable to walk and has trouble talking after a coral snake bit him on the ankle nearly a week ago.

Robert Hughson remains in Memorial Regional Medical Center. Doctors said he won’t be discharged until he can eat solid foods and walk again.

“It’s numb from like here down,” said Hughson pointing to his lower leg. “inside there’s a burning.”

Last Tuesday Hughson said he heard a strange noise coming from his home air conditioning unit. He went outside to investigate and that’s when he stepped on a coral snake.

“I felt a horrible burning in my leg,” he recalled. “I saw it chewing and then I remembered the rhyme red and yellow kill a fellow. First of all I kicked and the snake went flying into the grass in the back and I never saw it again.”

Hughson’s experience as a former paramedic likely saved his life. He calmed himself down and called 911 on his cell phone.

“Stay calm that’s the main thing,” said Hughson.“You can’t let your heart race because the more your heart races the quicker the venom will come up and kill you.”

Medics arrived and rushed him to the hospital while giving him 10 vials of anti-venom.

“I think because he was treated very early on he should make a good recovery,” said Dr. Heidi Cohen. “It can be fatal. It’s a very serious snake.”

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