Barnacle Poisoning? - SailNet Community
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 1 Old 02-12-2002 Thread Starter
Contributing Authors
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 536
Thanks: 0
Thanked 11 Times in 9 Posts
Rep Power: 18
Barnacle Poisoning?

I'd like to find out more about poisoning from barnacles because I recently ended up in the hospital after scraping my dinghy and receiving a cut on my hand from what I think was a barnacle. All my lymph glands swelled up and I could not breathe and was placed on oxygen and a respirator. This incident occurred about two months ago and I am still suffering from dizzy spells and numbness and muscle spams. Do you know what causes all of this?

Sue & Larry respond:
We deferred to Bill Mahaffy, SailNet’s medical expert, regarding your quandary. Upon presenting him with your question, he immediately responded that what you had experienced was probably not poisoning, but rather invenomation. So what is invenomation? Good question. Actually, venom is a substance created by an animal, which must enter the bloodstream to do its damage. Poison is a substance that causes problems when it is taken orally, used topically, or inhaled. (Think of snakes; some are venomous, but none are poisonous, despite the titles of a several books.) So, had you not cut yourself and exposed your blood to the substances from the barnacles, you wouldn't likely have had these problems.

For more information on this malady, Mahaffy highly recommends that you refer to Dr. Paul Auerbach’s book, A Medical Guide to Hazardous Marine Life. We found this book available on line through for $16.76. Have a look and that should better explain the incident to you. Here's hoping you stay healthy and out of the hospital from now on.

Sue & Larry is offline  
Closed Thread

Quick Reply

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is Off
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome