Stingray injury


  • Stinger punctures skin to introduce heat-labile venom
  • Generally causes local symptoms without systemic effects
  • Often occurs when swimmers accidentally step on stingray in shallow water. Can be avoided by shuffling feet along bottom.
Common stingray (Dasyatis pastinaca)
A stingray's stinger (ruler in cm)

Clinical Features

  • Symptoms can vary by species
  • Associated with puncture or jagged laceration
  • Local pain, irritation, erythema
  • Systemic symptoms can include vomiting, muscle cramps, hypotension, paralysis, cardiac arrest

Differential Diagnosis

Marine toxins, envenomations, and bites


  • Clinical diagnosis
  • Consider x-ray to evaluate for retained foreign body (stinger)



  • Discharge

See Also

External Links


  1. Atkinson PRT. Is hot water immersion an effective treatment for marine envenomation? Emergency Medicine Journal. 2006;23(7):503–508. doi:10.1136/emj.2005.028456.