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B.I.T.E.S – An innovative assessment tool for a systematic approach to the assessment of mammalian bite wounds

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-24, 22:43 authored by White, JM

Pet ownership is a way of life in Australia, over 80% of Australians own a pet (1). Bite injuries are the third most common cause of injury in Australian children (2). Bite wounds may cause serious trauma, while others initially appearing benign can lead to serious morbidity and mortality without appropriate management. This paper introduces an innovative B.I.T.E.S assessment tool (BAT) for use in a range of settings to enable the rapid and systematic assessment of mammalian bite wounds.

From a review of the literature surrounding assessment and treatment of mammalian bites a treatment pathway was created that focuses on 4 specific bites, 2 common (dog/cat) and 2 with significant considerations (human/bat). There are 5 steps in the BAT that are designed to ensure all aspects of management are covered. These include, B – bite features (species/site), I – infections/injections, T – treatment/time, E – existing health considerations and S – signs/symptoms. The BAT is easy to use and can positively improve patient outcomes in several ways.

The tool is adaptable to several bite presentations and is currently used by Extended Care Paramedics in NSW. The tool has been presented at the Australian Society for Infectious Diseases Zoonoses conference and is being prepared for inclusion in the Australian Doctor publication. Using this tool can provide a framework for a systematic approach, ensuring all risk factors are considered in a simple and timely manner.


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Australian College of Nurse Practitioners (ACNP) Annual conference


Tasmanian School of Medicine

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Australian College of Nurse Practitioners (ACNP) Annual conference

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Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified

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