An adult can die within five minutes of getting stung. The venom is super toxic and can almost immediately paralyze respiratory, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular function. It literally destroys skin cells leaving horrific scars. A box jellyfish’s venom kills humans faster than any other animal’s venom.
A sting from a box jellyfish can cause death by cardiac arrest (or drowning as a result of shock) within minutes in the most severe cases. Fortunately, the severity of the sting varies tremendously from case to case and depends on factors such as the size of the jellyfish, the size of the victim, the area of the body stung and the amount of tentacle-to-skin contact. Generally, three meters of tentacle-to-skin contact is around the minimum required for a sting to be fatal. In other good news, there is a relatively common antidote to jellyfish venom: vinegar. Vinegar neutralizes the jelly fish’s sting, and if applied early enough, it can prevent cardiac arrest. In cases when vinegar is not administered in time, there is also an antivenom.
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