In a recent event that has left netizens both amused and puzzled, a young Chinese man, guided by scenes from popular TV dramas, made an unconventional decision to suck out what he believed to be “poison” from a cat scratch on his girlfriend’s hand. This well-intentioned yet ill-informed move not only left him with a hefty medical bill but also made him the talk of the town on various online platforms.
The incident took place in Nanchang, Jiangxi province, southeastern China. The individual in question, Jia, a university student, was spending time with his girlfriend when she was accidentally scratched by a stray cat. In his concern and panic, and influenced by countless television scenes of people sucking out snake venom, he believed he could extract the “poison” from the cat’s scratch in a similar manner. Such a reaction highlights how deeply rooted some dramatic scenes can become in people’s minds, influencing their decision-making in real-life situations.
Speaking to Litchi News, Jia elaborated on his impulsive decision: “The thought of my girlfriend in pain made my heart ache. I’ve always believed that in relationships, we should share both good times and challenges. So, in that moment, I felt I could ease her pain by sucking out the toxin. I was completely unaware of the risks until the doctors educated me.”
The medical staff soon explained the severity of his actions. Jia was exposed to a Level Three risk of contracting rabies, the highest and most dangerous level. As a preventive measure against the potential threat of the deadly disease, both he and his girlfriend were administered a combination of vaccines, which included anti-rabies medicine and immunoglobulin. The treatment wasn’t cheap. Jia alone had to bear a cost of 1,116 yuan (US$153), and the combined medical expenses for the couple were even more.
However, in the face of adversity, Jia maintained his sense of humor. He jokingly remarked, “A single attempt with my mouth led to a 1,500 yuan bill!”
Chi Yun, the Director of the Infectious Diseases Department II at Tangshan Branch of The Second Hospital of Nanjing, provided valuable insight into the situation. She explained, “The rabies virus has a strong affinity for nerve cells. Areas with a dense concentration of nerve endings, like the lips or fingertips, are at a higher risk of infection.”
She further cautioned against the practice of using one’s mouth to clean wounds. In case of injuries, she advised washing the affected area with clean water, especially if soap isn’t available. Furthermore, if there’s a potential risk of rabies, immediate medical intervention, including a rabies jab, is essential.
This peculiar incident garnered significant attention online. While many users were amused, others provided their perspectives. One user jokingly commented, “He probably got too engrossed in Chinese kung fu movies and thought he could extract poison like they do in those dramas.” Another user chimed in with a factual clarification: “It’s worth noting that even for snakebites, using one’s mouth to suck out venom is not effective. In fact, it can endanger both parties involved.”
A different user summed up the general sentiment, “This young man’s love for his girlfriend is evident, but he could definitely use a bit more common sense.” Another quipped, “Love sometimes blinds intelligence, I guess.”