Rattlesnake bite victim treated with new anti-venom: Anavip

PHOENIX (FOX 10) -- A Phoenix hiker survived a rattlesnake bite thanks to a new type of anti-venom, which was recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Sam Evans tells us he was enjoying a hike over the weekend and was bitten while trying to remove the snake with a stick -- and it's not the first time this has happened to him. In fact, he says this was his fifth snake bite!

Evans' hand isn't doing so well after the bite.

"You can see the discoloration along the backside here."

He tells us he had an allergic reaction to the normal anti-venom, CroFab, so his doctor had to find an alternative.

"Found out if they can get a hold of this new stuff, told me it was new. I didn't know how new until after the fact," said Evans.

Dr. Ayrn O'Connor says this new anti-venom, Anavip, prevents any late complications, such as bleeding.

"The new anti-venom is going to last in the body longer. Once you get it, you can control the signs of envenomation," explained O'Connor.

So far, Evans says he's doing great and is feeling a lot less pain compared to the last time he was bitten.

"It feels okay. Most of the pain is gone. The part that does is isolated to the thumb. The rest all the way up to here is on the tender side."

Speaking of which, he later found out that this wasn't his first run-in with Dr. O'Connor. She was the same doctor who treated him 14 years ago when he had a previous snake bite.

"He and I, we've talked and you know, it's not like we walked in and he said he recognized me and I kind of was like, you look familiar, which is why I looked," she said.

She jokingly says she hopes to never see him again -- as a patient, of course.

Being an avid hiker and dealing with his fifth snake bite, Evans says he has finally learned his lesson.

"I'll try to stay away from them."

Dr. O'Connor with Banner - University Medical Center Phoenix says if you come across a snake while hiking, the last thing you should do is try to remove it. If anything, get away from it as quickly as you can. And if you are accidentally bitten, she says there's nothing you can do to treat it in the field, so get to a hospital as soon as you can.