IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Grab your bear can or camp chair, kick your feet up and chew the fat about anything Sierra Nevada related that doesn't quite fit in any of the other forums. Within reason, (and the HST rules and guidelines) this is also an anything goes forum. Tell stories, discuss wilderness issues, music, or whatever else the High Sierra stirs up in your mind.
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gary c.
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by gary c. » Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:31 pm

neurochip,
This time of year if you post it people will read it.


"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray






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Harlen
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by Harlen » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:12 pm

Interesting that this fun post has resurfaced. I just discovered a new run in our Santa Cruz Mtns., which was beautiful, but at one point it had me high-stepping through poison oak sprigs. My own p.o. history being on the positive end of the spectrum, I didn't much worry, just hoped that the dogs would get some, and convey to onto my surly wife. :littledevil:

Longri wrote:
If someone got an itchy rear due to intentionally eating poison oak I'd think it was funny.
I'll go out and eat a few leaves now- to see if I can finally induce pruritus ani, and make Longri's day!

*...... no luck-- no leaves.

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Arca_Stone
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by Arca_Stone » Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:33 am

I'm one of those lucky few who enjoys extreme tolerance to a broad range of toxins, including urushiol. As such, it falls to me to clear the way for others who want to hike or work near plants or in areas prone to toxic substances. I've worked in landscaping, food industries and the medical field, all of which brought insight (and exposure) to all sorts of nasty stuff. I'm also an avid hiker, forager and herbalist, always on the lookout for safe edibles and medicinal plants.

Along with the task of 'blazing a trail' through these poisonous plants and substances, it also falls on me to make sure the others are safe from second hand exposure. Thankfully, my wife, who is exceptionally vulnerable to such things, is very knowledgeable in plants and biology, so we can work together, making it easier to protect others.

While it is possible to gain some resistance to many substances through exposure, whether by eating them, allowing them to contact skin, or some other method, this can be extremely dangerous and should be avoided at all costs. Unless a person knows exactly what they are doing and is fully prepared to deal with a negative reaction, such attempts at resistance can and often do have dire consequences, including blindness, permanent lung or other organ damage, even death.

If one really wants to be outdoors, it is far better to know what's what in terms of poisonous plants, as well as understanding which plants can help combat the noxious ones. Plantain, for instance, is an instant treatment for, yup, poison ivy/oak/sumac. Make a simple poultice of the leaves by chewing a bit and putting the mash on the affected area. Incidentally, this also works for mosquito bites and bee stings by drawing out the chemicals these insects inject. Dock can be used similarly.

Enjoy nature, but do it responsibly and safely.

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John Harper
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by John Harper » Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:35 am

Arca_Stone wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:33 am
Plantain, for instance, is an instant treatment for, yup, poison ivy/oak/sumac. Make a simple poultice of the leaves by chewing a bit and putting the mash on the affected area. Incidentally, this also works for mosquito bites and bee stings by drawing out the chemicals these insects inject. Dock can be used similarly.
Where is someone going to find plantain leaves near poison oak? Aren't they a Southeast Asian tropical plant, while poison oak grows on the dry West Coast? Plantain leaves aren't really something you can just find at your local supermarket, perhaps a local Mexican market? I've only seen the plantain fruit in my local Mexican market, never the leaves.

John

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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by RSC » Thu Aug 27, 2020 1:21 pm

John Harper wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:35 am
Arca_Stone wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:33 am
Plantain, for instance, is an instant treatment for, yup, poison ivy/oak/sumac. Make a simple poultice of the leaves by chewing a bit and putting the mash on the affected area. Incidentally, this also works for mosquito bites and bee stings by drawing out the chemicals these insects inject. Dock can be used similarly.
Where is someone going to find plantain leaves near poison oak? Aren't they a Southeast Asian tropical plant, while poison oak grows on the dry West Coast? Plantain leaves aren't really something you can just find at your local supermarket, perhaps a local Mexican market? I've only seen the plantain fruit in my local Mexican market, never the leaves.

John
I think that the plantain being referred to is not the type of banana, but rather a plant in the genus Plantago, a weedy plant introduced from Eurasia. But you're right -- I don't think you would normally find this around poison oak, but more in disturbed areas or around houses or on roadsides.

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grampy
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by grampy » Thu Aug 27, 2020 5:21 pm

You can also find home remedies using papain, a chemical which can be found in meat tenderizer.
https://www.healthline.com/health/outdo ... bee-stings
It is usually derived from papaya fruit, but can also be found in pineapple.

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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by dave54 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 9:14 pm

When I was a young 'un I never got it. Could roll naked in the stuff with no effect.

My stint on a hotshot crew made me sensitive. Probably the continual and heavy exposure to both the plant and the smoke.

Now I am retired, and I seem to have re-acquired some immunity.
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Log off and get outdoors!
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Re: IT WORKED, I'M IMMUNE TO POISON OAK!!!

Post by Harlen » Sat Aug 29, 2020 8:50 am

While it is possible to gain some resistance to many substances through exposure, whether by eating them, allowing them to contact skin, or some other method, this can be extremely dangerous and should be avoided at all costs. Unless a person knows exactly what they are doing and is fully prepared to deal with a negative reaction, such attempts at resistance can and often do have dire consequences, including blindness, permanent lung or other organ damage, even death.
ArcaStone, are you still talking about the risk of ingesting a small poison oak leaf, or have you switched to more deadly species, such as datura?
Note, I, and most of my botanist friends, and most of the rest of a large crew of environmental scientists do ingest small p.o. leaves as a preventative to suffering a nasty reaction from exposure. No one I know has suffered ill-effects.

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