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Child flown to hospital after being stabbed by catfish in Florida

Pearl River Flooding catfish
(AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

A child was flown to a hospital in Tampa after he was stabbed in the chest by a catfish. The incident occurred while the child and his family were on a fishing trip in New Port Richey over the weekend. According to the report, the The mother then tried to drive the child to an area hospital but noticed that child was having trouble breathing so she pulled over and called emergency services. Pasco County Fire Rescue officials noted that the child had a catfish barb lodged in his chest about 1 to 1.5 inches deep and flew him to St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital. According to several reports, the catfish barbs contain a venom that can be released into the body and cause swelling and increased blood flow to the area: “Catfish venom glands are found alongside sharp, bony spines on the edges of the dorsal and pectoral fins, and these spines can be locked into place when the catfish is threatened,” the University of Michigan said in a news release. “When a spine jabs a potential predator, the membrane surrounding the venom gland cells is torn, releasing venom into the wound.” The extent of the child’s injuries is not known at this time.