This is the third post based upon my presentation given at the Wilderness Medical Society Annual Meeting held in Snowmass, Colorado from July 24-29, 2009. The presentation was entitled “Just When You Thought It Was Safe to Go Back in the Water.”” The topic was an overview of hazardous marine animals and it was delivered by me. In the previous post, there was information about stingrays and scorpionfishes. In this post, there is information about injuries from sea urchins incurred in the marine environment.
Sea urchins are free-living echinoderms with egg-shaped, globular or flattened bodies. They are covered by tightly arranged spines and/or triple-jawed pedicellariae, which are seizing and envenoming organs. The spines can be brittle, hollow, sharp and venom-bearing or blunt and non venom-bearing (such as with Hawaiian pencil urchins). Most persons are envenomed when they step upon or brush against an urchin. Read more »