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Pain from bluebottle jellyfish stings.

An 11-year-old girl presented to the emergency department with severe pain after a jellyfish sting at a New South Wales beach. Bluebottle (Physalia) jellyfish was deemed the most likely cause considering her geographical location. The Australian Resuscitation Council Guideline (2010) suggests immersing in water as hot as can be tolerated for 20 min for treating pain from jellyfish stings. This guideline was written based on past case reports, books and randomised controlled trials (RCTs). We performed a search to assess the most current evidence for relief of pain from Bluebottle jellyfish stings, which yielded two systematic reviews and seven RCTs. Both systematic reviews had similar conclusions, with one of the RCTs used in both reviews showing the most relevance to our presenting patient in terms of demographics, location and jellyfish type. This journal club article is an appraisal of this RCT by Loten et al. and the validity of its conclusion that hot water immersion is most effective for the relief of pain from Bluebottle stings.

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