Kitchener-Waterloo

Woman bitten by snake on vacation in Thailand to recover thanks to Toronto Zoo's antivenom

An Ontario woman is expected to make a full recovery after being bitten by a snake in Thailand – and treated with antivenom from the Toronto Zoo.

Zoo couriered antivenom to hospital in Kitchener where woman’s bite symptoms had ‘re-emerged’

Shalaba Kalliath had been bitten by a snake while vacationing in Thailand, and her symptoms "re-emerged" once she returned to Ontario. She was admitted to Grand River Hospital in Kitchener for treatment. (CBC)

An Ontario woman is expected to make a full recovery after being bitten by a snake in Thailand — and treated with antivenom from the Toronto Zoo.

On June 7, the zoo got a call from the Ontario Poison Centre about a woman suffering snake bite symptoms.

Shalaba Kalliath had been bitten while vacationing in Thailand and her symptoms "re-emerged" once she returned to Ontario, according to Toronto Zoo officials.

When she was admitted to Grand River Hospital in Kitchener, doctors needed to secure antivenom for the bite.

The Toronto Zoo stepped up — quickly sending six vials of antivenom to the hospital.

The zoo also connected the hospital with another Ontario facility that had antivenom on hand for a Malayan Pit Viper, and additional antivenom was sent.

Kalliath is expected to make a full recovery.

Toronto Zoo officials said zoos keep antivenom on hand to keep staff safe if they are bitten by venomous snakes.

It's one of the few zoos in Canada that stores antivenom on site.

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