Tiger-Brown Snake Antivenom 8000 units

Tiger-Brown Snake Antivenom 8000 units


Constituent Statements

Purified equine immunoglobulin proteins less than 200 g/L (4,000 units tiger snake antivenom and 4,000 units brown snake antivenom). One unit is defined as the amount of antivenom required to neutralise the lethal effects of 0.01 mg of venom. Contains 2.2 mg/mL phenol as preservative.


For the treatment of tiger snake (Notechis scutatus), black snake (red-bellied black, Pseudechis porphyriacus; king brown, Pseudechis australis) and brown snake (eastern brown, Pseudonaja textilis; Dugite, Pseudonaja affinis; western brown, Pseudonaja nuchalis) envenomation in dogs, cats and horses.

Based on the published immunological cross-reactivity of other closely related Australian elapid species, Tiger-Brown Antivenom is also indicated for treatment of envenomation from copperheads (Austrelaps spp), rough scaled snake (Tropidechis carinatus), small-eyed snake (Cryptophis nigrescens), and whip snakes (Demansia spp).

Net Contents

8,000 units per 25 mL vial

Directions for Use

Route of injection. Antivenom should always be administered via the intravenous route. Subcutaneous or intramuscular absorption is too slow to be effective. To be used by, or under the direct supervision of, a registered veterinary surgeon.


Antivenom is foreign protein when administered to dogs and cats. There is theoretical potential for an acute anaphylactoid response to intravenous administration however this risk is low.

It is recommended to pre-medicate the patient with dexamethasone and antihistamine to minimise the risk of adverse reaction. Antivenom may be diluted in sterile saline diluent, warmed to body temperature, and administered by slow intravenous bolus or infusion. Administration should cease if adverse reaction occurs, but re-administration by slow
intravenous infusion may be possible.

The normal appearance of the antivenom is a clear, pale blue to colourless solution. Do not use if the antivenom appears turbid or discoloured.

Side Effects

In rare instances transient angioedema may occur on the lips, face or ears.

Dosage and Administration

Suspected cases of snakebite by tiger, black or brown snakes should receive an initial dose of 1 vial (8000 units) of Tiger-Brown Snake Antivenom. Further doses of antivenom may be required based on clinical experience and if signs of envenomation are not effectively treated following the initial dose.

General Directions

Tiger-Brown Snake Antivenom 8000 units is prepared from appropriately immunised horses. Plasma is fractionated and a purified immunoglobulin concentrate prepared. The antivenom has been shown to neutralise both the lethal effects and procoagulant effects of tiger and brown snake venom.

Antivenom should be administered as soon as possible after envenomation has occurred.

Diagnosis is usually based on clinical signs, coagulation disturbances, biochemical abnormalities like detection of venom in urine or serum or known encounter with a snake.

Animals may present with a diverse range of clinical signs depending upon the snake species, time elapsed and total amount of venom received. Potentially lethal envenomation may result in sudden collapse and vomiting within minutes. Apparent recovery may occur within 30 minutes to be followed by a progressive onset of clinical signs. Any or all of the following signs may be observed: weakness, ataxia, flaccid paralysis, dilated pupils, respiratory distress, abdominal breathing, vomiting, agitation, trembling and salivation. Blood may fail to clot and bleeding time extended. Haemolysis and haemoglobinuria or myoglobinuria may be observed. Flaccid paralysis may progress to respiratory paralysis, coma and death.

Antivenom should not be considered the sole treatment for snakebite. Supportive care must be provided to envenomed animals. Respiratory paralysis, when present, should be treated with supplemental oxygen and if indicated, intubation and mechanical ventilation may be a necessary lifesaving measure. Supportive intravenous fluid therapy is essential to maintain hydration, promote clearance of circulating toxins and avoid complications from haemoglobinuria and myoglobinuria. A consumptive coagulopathy is often present, and care must be taken to monitor for clinically significant bleeding. Haemolysis can be clinically significant in some animals and monitoring of haematological parameters is recommended with appropriate treatment. Pain can be significant in some animals and may require management with opioids or other suitable analgesics. Envenomed animals should be hospitalised and maintained in a quiet, non-stimulating environment.

Padula, A.M., Ong H.M., Kelers K. (2018) Snake Envenomation in Domestic Animal Species in Australia. p505-536 In: Gopalakrishnakone P., Vogel CW., Seifert S., Tambourgi D. (eds) Clinical Toxinology in Australia, Europe, and Americas. Toxinology. Springer, Dordrecht.
Sutherland, SK. Australian animal toxins. (2001). Oxford University Press. ISBN 0 19
5506643 X

Withholding Periods

Zero (0) days.

First Aid Instructions

If poisoning occurs, contact a doctor or Poisons Information Centre. Phone Australia 131126.

Additional User Safety

Take care to avoid accidental self-injection.


Dispose of empty containers, outer packaging or expired product by wrapping with paper and putting in garbage. Discarded needles should immediately be placed in a designated and appropriately labelled ‘sharps’ container.


Store between 2°C and 8°C (Refrigerate. Do not freeze.) Protect from light.

APVMA Approval No. 83903/109217