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Spider Bite: Brown Recluse Spider Bite (cont.)

Brown Recluse Bite Symptoms

Brown recluse spider bites often go unnoticed initially because they are usually painless bites. Occasionally, some minor burning that feels like a bee sting is noticed at the time of the bite and a small white blister develops at the site of the bite. Symptoms usually develop two to eight hours after a bite. Keep in mind that most bites cause little tissue destruction.

Victims may experience these symptoms:

  • severe pain at bite site after about four hours,
  • severe itching,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • fever, and
  • myalgias (muscle pain).

Initially the bite site is mildly red and upon close inspection may reveal fang marks. Most commonly, the bite site will become firm and heal with little scaring over the next few days or weeks. Occasionally, the local reaction will be more severe with erythema and blistering, sometimes leading to a blue discoloration, and ultimately leading to a necrotic lesion and scarring. Signs that may be present include:

  • blistering (common),
  • necrosis (death) of skin and subcutaneous fat (less common), and
  • severe destructive necrotic lesions with deep wide borders (rare).
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/23/2014

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