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Lion's Mane Jellyfish

Cyanea capillata (Latin name)

By Bjarne Lühr Hansen PhD, MD and Philipp Skafte-Holm MD, Mentor Institute

Lion’s mane jellyfish is one of the largest jellyfish. It rarely measures over 35 cm in diameter but the species has a several meters long veil consisting of almost invisible treads with poisoning nettle-cells. The jellyfish is often near the surface where it can get in touch with bathers. The treads are often stuck on an anchor rope.

When in contact with bathers the nettle-cells releases a small barbed poison needle that sprays a paralyzing poison into the skin. It stings badly in the skin and a burn can in worst-case trigger muscle cramps.

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What can you do?

Put on gloves when you handle an anchor rope. Remove the treads and nettle-cells from the skin. Carefully scrape the affected area with a close shaver in one direction and then soap the skin. It is a god idea to use local anesthetic lotion or ordinary pain killing medication. Hold the attacked leg or arm at rest.

Contact the doctor tomorrow

If the pain is persistent.

Contact the doctor immediately

Never necessary.