The Doctors: How To Treat Jellyfish Stings & Glowing Cancer Dye


The Drs: Jellyfish Stings

Brenda and her sons go on an annual beach vacation, but she’s always concerned about Jellyfish Stings. Dr. Travis Stork welcomed Brenda and her young boys to answer her questions. Of thousands of types of Jellyfish in the world, “about 100 have venom that’s dangerous to humans,” Dr. Travis said.

Box Jellyfish, from Northern Australia, and the Man Of War, found in warm oceans, can be extremely dangerous. But most Jellyfish Stings are just painful.


Dr. Travis said you can Avoid Jellyfish Stings by wearing a Wet Suit or special lotions. You can also avoid areas where schools of Jellyfish are swimming.

The Doctors: Poisonous Jellyfish

Out of thousands, only about 100 types of Jellyfish are actually poisonous to humans.

How To Treat Jellyfish Stings

White Vinegar and Salt Water can help ease the pain. But Fresh Water can actually make it more painful.


After you pour White Vinegar or Salt Water on the wound, Dr. Travis showed the boys how you can use tweezers to remove the Jellyfish Tentacles.

But even once those are gone, there could be Pneumatocites embedded in your skin, invisible to the naked eye. Spray shaving cream to the affected area and use a credit card to scrape it off the skin. Afterwards, reapply White Vinegar.

Jellyfish Sting: When To Go To The Hospital

Dr. Travis said the only time you need to treat a Jellyfish Sting at the hospital is if someone is having a severe allergic reaction or shortness of breath.

There is a popular misconception that the best way to treat a Jellyfish Sting is to urinate on it. Dr. Travis said you should not urinate on a Jellyfish Sting.

The Drs: Jellyfish Save Lives?

Dr. Travis explained that some Jellyfish contain a protein that makes them glow in the dark. He told the boys this could have future medical applications.

Glowing Acid Detects Cancer

Cancer surgeons want to get tumors out the first time. Purdue is currently studying a treatment that makes cancer cells grow. Mixing a glowing dye with Folic Acid can make cancer cells glow, helping surgeons find and remove them more easily.

One of the researchers involved is Dr. Philip Low from Purdue University. He explained that the dye doesn’t actually find the cancer. Instead, the cancer finds the Folic Acid it uses to replicate. When cancer cells absorb the dye mixture, they become illuminated.

Dr. Low said they are about to begin clinic trials at the Mayo Clinic, and these dyes could be commonly used within three to four years.

Dr. Travis explained that cancer cells want to grow and spread, which is why they attach to nutrients and how doctors can take advantage of this breakthrough.

The Doctors: Heartbeat Pillow

A pillow being developed in the UK is good for couples in long distance relationships. It uses sensors to record your heartbeat and send it to your partner’s pillow, which glows. This pillow is not on the market yet, but The Doctors think it is a good way for loved ones to stay connected.

Dr. Travis Stork said, “Anything you can do to stay connected with your partner…truly is good for your health.”


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