The woman claims she picked up the snake because she thought it was a stick and was bit on the finger.
After being bit, she captured the snake in a shopping bag and brought it to a walk-in medical center – she was promptly rushed to nearby Johns Hopkins Hospital.
In an effort to save the woman’s life, Maryland Poison Control searched an anti-venom Web site and found a cure. An emergency phone call was made to Jason Bell, Assistant Curator of Reptiles and Amphibians at the Philadelphia Zoo who was able to locate the anti-venom.
Although the snake a “monocled cobra” doesn’t reside at the zoo, Bell found 30 vials of anti-venom and handed it over to Pennsylvania State Police who rushed the vials to a halfway point where a Johns Hopkins ambulance crew was waiting.
“Doctors had to use 10 vials of the anti-venom to bring the woman around,” Bell told the Daily News.
Some speculation has been made to whether the parking lot story is true. Kim Hammond, a Baltimore area veterinarian who helped search for the anti-venom told the paper that since snakes are cold-blooded animals, they couldn’t survive outdoors in cold weather. Also, the woman didn’t fully explain why she would pick up a stick in a parking lot.