Viewer Comments: Brown Recluse Spider Bite - Experience

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Brown Recluse Spider Bite - Experience

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Comment from: Dori, 7-12 Male (Caregiver) Published: February 26

It was May 1973 just before my son's 8th birthday and we had gotten a call from his school around noon to pick him up. He was sick with a high fever and had a swollen area on his lower back the size of a half dollar with an indentation in the center. We rushed him to his doctor who diagnosed him with a throat infection, asked him what happened to his back, and when my son said he fell while getting off the bus at school, the doctor assumed the swollen area on his back was an injury from the fall. He sent him home with an antibiotic. A few hours after resting quietly in bed, he got up to go to the bathroom and screamed when all he was urinating was blood. We rushed him to the emergency room and a surgeon knew instantly that he had been bitten by an insect of some sort. Blood test revealed that he was bitten by a brown recluse spider. He was given fluid and steroids. A catheter drained blood from his kidneys. All we could do was pray as we listened to our child scream in pain for hours. The entire side of his back and chest had hardened and we were told that due to systemic toxicity, he most likely would not live through the night. After he had made it through the night, we were told not to get our hopes up, the hardened areas could slough off exposing his heart and lungs. Gradually, over the next few days, his condition improved and he celebrated his birthday in the hospital where many people came by to see what the doctors were calling 'the miracle child.' Most kids don't survive what he went through. Today, he has only a large scar on his back. These spiders are not to be ignored. We had never heard of them until our son was bitten and he was the first reported victim in our county. Sometimes the only way to know that they exist in your home is to lay glue traps along the baseboard. If you find one, there most likely are hundreds or thousands more that you don't see.

Comment from: Bitten and swollen, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 17

I was bit by a brown recluse spider in between my little toe and next. I could barely see it but it became white the next day. I was in pain but not sick to my stomach. We went to an urgent care two days later and the doctor gave me a light antibiotic. We then went on vacation for 3 days to South Padre island. My foot swelled up like a football. I was putting heat on it and that is a mistake. Always put ice around the swollen area. My foot looked like a soft ball mitt and the color around my toes was a dark red going to purple. I went to a hospital and they admitted me right away. They gave me a powerful antibiotic shot then a tetanus shot, then observed me in the emergency room for 3 hours. I am now on powerful antibiotics and Benadryl cream. And I take diphenhydramine during the day and night. You must do these things until the bite site heals, or it is surgery.

Comment from: snoopy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 24

I was bitten by a brown recluse spider in September 2005. It was located above my right breast. I did not know that I had even been bitten until the next day. I had a fever of 102 and a spot that went from a pimple size to a half dollar. I had to have surgery and every other day go to the surgeon to remove dead tissue. After 2 weeks I was able to handle my wound at home. I have been sick ever since. I honestly believe it triggered rheumatoid arthritis (RA) that was dormant in my system and perhaps would have developed in my later age. I am now disabled due to RA and back problems.

Comment from: Izzy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: May 27

I was bitten by a brown recluse spider in June of 2014. It must have walked and bitten me 3 times. I felt the pain under my long pants, took them off, shook out the critter and smashed it. I had large open weeping painful sores for about 10 weeks. They left scars, the largest of which must have been the first bite where the most venom was left. Up to now this is pretty much the same as everyone else's story. This May, I developed a bad asthma attack and pneumonia and was placed on steroids which dropped my immune system. What do you know! In the area of the largest scar, it erupted as if it were a brand new bite. My doctor said there must have been enough old venom hidden in there to react when my immune system was down. I've been on antibiotics again for 5 weeks with little progress. Grouchy and pesky little critters.

Comment from: go, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: May 05

I was bit on the face by a brown recluse spider and I think the venom got in my brain. All I got was brain damage, wish it was like spider man!

Comment from: Spiderbitevictim, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 07

If you think that you have been bit by a spider, go to the doctor immediately, and do not wait. Spider bites look rather harmless in the beginning, but they get worse within hours. I now have a ring of necrotic holes in my skin. It started out looking like acne. I feel dizzy and my joints and muscles ache. I feel slightly nauseated. I hate spiders.

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Patient Comments & Reviews

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Brown Recluse Spider Bite - Treatment

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