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2016 WOWSA AWARD WINNERS
2016 WOWSA Man of the Year – Nejib Belhedi
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Saturday, October 12, 2013
The Science Of The Sting By Professor Yanagihara
It was a fiery feeling and fought to get back to shore. As a biochemist, I was intensely interested in this thing that created so much pain."
Dr. Yanagihara gave a presentation on The Science of the Sting. Her talk focused on a creature that you cannot even see can kill an athlete. She opened up the talk with a question, "With Friends Like These Who Needs Anemones?"
"The box jellyfish have cubozoan porins. The standard of care was primitive in Hawaii when I was initially hit. There is loss of life due to cardiac arrest.
Death is rapid within 5-20 minutes for Chironex stings and within 2-48 hours in Irukanji box jellyfish. Anti-venom treatments are ineffective. EPI can kill, this is what I want all swimmers and their crew members to know. I started to collect information on the 2 basic families on the highly toxic venomous creatures.
The box jellyfish has acute visual powers. They have functional eyes, 24 eyes with an iris and retina. Single photons can excite the animals. Jellyfish can swim an obstacle course. With white light, they will swim towards the white light. With red lights, they do not do anything and sit on the bottom of our tank in the laboratory. I have been able to track the Alatina jellyfish in Hawaii. We have the oldest data set in the world, over a 16-year period. We know there is a complex cycle doing on.
Deaths by jellyfish are distributed around the world and we will do a collaborative study with Professor Doyle in Ireland." She created a model to predict where fatalities may occur around deep drop-offs off the shore based on night pelagic survey studies conducted around the world.
She explained what happened when a sting occurs. She developed a unique process to capture the entire content of venom of the box jellyfish. "The sting can leave thousands of mineralized spines in your sting. When we catalogued the composition of the venom, I was surprised. What was not in there? There were neural effects, hemotological effects, and other effects that are surprisingly fast. I have found a novel porin inhibitors."
She has come up with two formulations: IV therapeutic and a sting care kit that is designed for non-lethal box stings.
"Avoidance is the best choice, but if you are stung, do not use cold packs because they preserve the venom, do not use a EPI pen, do not apply cold fresh water or alcohol, vinegar is a good choice to remove tentacles, do not scrape the sting, and hot water immersion is the best with saturated epsom salt will help."
Note: we were not able to adequately capture the essence and details of Professor Yanagihara's presentation as we would have wished, so please excuse errors in the above reporting.
Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association
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Open Water Swimming Magazine
Open Water Swimming MagazineThe Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.
WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...
The Other Shore
The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
An Almanac for Open Water SwimmingAn almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.
This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.
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The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.