Child stabbed in chest by barb from catfish

Pasco County Fire Rescue says barb embedded deep in child’s chest
Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 2:26 PM EDT
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A child was flown to a Florida hospital after being stabbed in the chest by a barb from a catfish.

Pasco County Fire Rescue said the incident happened Tuesday in New Port Richey.

After the child was stung, the child's mother started driving to a hospital, Pasco County Fire Rescue spokesman Corey Dierdorff told the Tampa Bay Times. But when the child started having difficulty breathing, she pulled over and called 911, Dierdorff said.

Rescuers arrived and found the barb was embedded deep in the child's chest, Dierdorff said.

The child was airlifted to St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa.

Dierdorff didn't reveal the age or gender of the child, but he said the child was younger than 10. It was not immediately known what the child had been doing when he or she was stabbed.

According to the Florida Department of Health, a catfish has venom in its spines, which are so strong they can pierce the sole of a shoe. Catfish stings can cause swelling, numbness and, sometimes, fainting or reduced heart rate.

The child's condition wasn't immediately known.

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