DeQuincy woman stuck with hospital bill over $400,000 following snake bite

Raising awareness during snake season
Published: May. 26, 2022 at 4:58 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - On sunny days like this one, you may want to get outside and enjoy the weather. But - with these warmer temperatures comes snake season. One Dequincy woman’s snakebite experience, and her advice for others two years later.

“We live in the south, it’s hot, we’re always outside and they’re everywhere,” said Spears.

Snakes that is - and Randi Spears had a terrifying run-in with a cottonmouth two years ago.

“I guess I just stepped on the carport, it bit me twice, I did not know it bit me twice. I only felt it bite me once. when i picked my foot up it was hanging off my foot so I kicked it and it flew off the porch and I went and looked at it and I said “Oh my god I got bit by a snake,” said Spears.

Spears said the symptoms started immediately.

“Felt like my bone was on fire. We live in Dequincy, by the time we got down 171 to Moss Bluff I was headache, nausea, vomiting,” said Spears.

All of that coupled with swelling, irrational thoughts and a skyrocketing blood pressure.

As if the pain wasn’t enough, at $11,600 per anti-venom vile, Spears said she was stuck with a hospital bill over $400,000.

“I was only in ICU for one night, probably because it cost so much but I did not have to have any surgery or anything. I was really lucky. But I got 21 viles of CroFab anti venom,” said Spears.

Now- Spears is sharing her story in hopes that no one has to go through the pain that she did.

“I try to spread as much information as I can because I don’t ever want anybody’s kid to ever have to deal with being bit or anybody to have to deal with being bit,” said Spears.

Her advice- know how to recognize venomous snakes in the area, and if you do get bit, get to a hospital immediately.

“Don’t chase the snake, just get to the hospital, they will figure it out for you,” said Spears.

The types of venomous snakes you may see in Louisiana are rattlesnakes, copperheads, cottonmouths and coral snakes.

The anti-venom producer CroFab also has an app that will give you information on snakes in your area, as well as near-by hospitals that have anti-venom accessible.

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