Selene vomer
Class: Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes)
Order: Perciformes
Family: Carangidae
Genus: Selene
Species: vomer
Common Names
Wireback, Moonshine, Moonfish, Lookdown, Jack, Horsehead, Hairfinned silverfish, Hairfinned dory, Flatjack, Dollarfish
Ciguatoxin areas
Taxonomy and Biology
No information available for Taxonomy and Biology
General: Neurotoxins
Ingestion of ciguatoxin can cause excitatory neurotoxic effects
General: Myotoxins
Does not occur, based on current clinical evidence
General: Procoagulants
Not present
General: Anticoagulants
Not present
General: Haemorrhagins
Not present
General: Nephrotoxins
Not present
General: Cardiotoxins
Not present
General: Necrotoxins
Not present
General: Other Toxins
Clinical Effects
General: Dangerousness
Severe poisoning possible, potentially but rarely lethal
General: Rate of Envenoming: Not applicable
General: Untreated Lethality Rate: Unknown but lethal potential cannot be excluded
General: Local Effects
Not applicable
General: Local Necrosis
Not applicable
General: General Systemic Effects
Variable non-specific effects which may include headache, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, tachypnoea, respiratory distress, hypotension, dizziness, collapse or convulsions
General: Neurotoxic Paralysis
Nervous system effects are a key feature and include parasthesiae, hot-cold reversal, but not classic flaccid paralysis.
General: Myotoxicity
Does not occur, based on current clinical evidence
General: Renal Damage
Does not occur, based on current clinical evidence
General: Cardiotoxicity
May cause tachy-or bradycardia, hypo- or hypertension.
General: Other
Nil specific
First Aid
Description: First aid for Ciguatera poisoning
1. If still within 1-3 hours after the fish meal, and providing the patient has absolutely no symptoms suggesting any degree of paralysis or difficulty swallowing or has drooling of saliva, then induce vomiting, if practical, to remove undigested fish from the stomach.
2. Seek medical attention.
Treatment Summary
Treatment requires a two pronged approach. The gastrointestinal symptoms may be severe, requiring rehydration with IV fluids and antiemetics and anti-diarrhoeals. The neurological symptoms respond to IV mannitol 20% (1g/kg IV over 30 minutes), though effectiveness is inversely proportional to the length of delay in commencing treatment. Initial improvement, followed by recurrence should be treated with further mannitol. A number of pharmaceuticals have been tried to remedy various ciguatera symptoms and reports of effectiveness are often conflicting. However, doxepin, antihistamines and fluoxetine have all showed benefits.
Key Diagnostic Features
The clinical syndrome of ciguatera poisoning is characterized by initial features of standard food poisoning, with nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain, but with distinctive neurological features, including myalgia, burning feeling of the skin on contact with cold water, pruritis, arthralgia, parasthesia (especially hands, feet, mouth), headache, altered or labile mood, ataxia and vertigo, increased sweating, ocular pain, painful teeth, tremors, neck stiffness, reduced muscle power, increased salivation and general malaise.
General Approach to Management
All cases should be fully assessed, rehydrated if there has been GIT fluid loss (vomiting & diarrhoea), IV mannitol considered, then symptomatic treatment.
Antivenom Therapy
Not applicable
No Antivenoms
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