Sea Urchin


Sea Urchin, Echinoderm Sting

  • Background
  1. Sea Urchins are in Echinoderm family
  • Pathophysiology
  1. Sea Urchin has spines with toxin coating
  2. Spines break-off in skin and may be nidus of infection
  • Symptoms
  1. Pain or burning at Trauma site
  2. Skin Discoloration or Tattooing
    1. Resolves within 48 hours if no retained spine in skin
  • Management
  1. Remove visible spines with forceps
  2. Retained spines: Historical method
    1. Hot wax applied to area and allowed to cool
      1. Wax should not be so hot to cause burns
    2. Remove wax with embedded spines
  3. Consider applying ammonia to dissolve retained spines
  4. Observe for signs of secondary infection
  • References