Brown Relcuse Bite!

Discussion in 'The Great Outdoors' started by Bear76, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. Bear76

    Bear76 New Member

    Jan 9, 2008
    [edit]This is no chigger bite - thus I split it off into a separate thread as a cautionary tale.[/edit]

    well I went & got myself bit on the hand by a brown recluse last night, so it looks like chiggers are now the least of my worries. My hand hurts like a b&*$^ but its not red yet. Apparently it takes up to 96 hours for the venom to really kick in and start doing its damage so I'm just waiting now...I'm 15 hours into this thing and praying that maybe I won't react to the venom. Figures I would go and get myself bit by the one spider that doesn't have a cure for the bite short of removing large pieces of skin & muscle.
  2. TxCajun

    TxCajun Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator Supporter

    Sep 7, 2004
    Re: Chiggers :mad:


    About 10+ years back, I was bitten twice on the leg, apparently in my sleep as I never knew what happened.  After several days of the wounds getting worse and worse, I finally went to the doctor who told me the bites/wounds appeared to be that of a brown recluse.  They are not especially aggressive spiders and usually only bite if forced up against the skin.  He said most likely it was in my bed and my movement pinned it up against my leg, thus the two bites.  He also told me I was too late in seeking treatment and that there was really nothing to do.  If you go within some prescribed time, there are apparently measures that can be taken, steroids, antibiotics, I don't know.  I don't think there is an anti-venom.  Anyway, after a certain number of hours, it is too late and the progression cannot be stopped.  Some reactions are not too bad but, but in some cases, the wounds can become very serious and can take years to heal.  Sometimes they never really do.  Dram for dram, the venom of these spiders is much more potent than that of a rattlesnake. Only the small quantity injected keeps them from killing adults, although small children can die as a result.  

    What happened to me was that the bites killed off the flesh around them and rotted 2 marble sized holes in my leg.  They were really nasty and took literally a couple of years to heal.  More than 10 years later, I still have scars.  I would certainly not want such a nasty, festering, ugly wound on my had for a couple years.  I urge you to go get this checked out before it is too late.  Granted, the severe reaction I had is relatively rare but I wouldn't take chances with a bite on the hand.

    Brown recluse bite pics

  3. burley

    burley Well-Known Member

    Nov 26, 2006
    Re: Chiggers :mad:

    What he said , ya need to see a doctor. There may be no magic 'cure' but if needed there are treatments that can help . Do not wait...
  4. Pwndy

    Pwndy Active Member

    Apr 25, 2010
    Definitely take these guys advice and get to the doctor ASAP. Those little dudes are bad to the bone and the longer you wait the more necrotic tissue will have to be removed. I know a lady who was bitten on the thigh and waited over a week until she was forced to go to the hospital by some relatives, by that time things had progressed so far that they took about a softball size chunk of flesh out of her leg.
  5. Bear76

    Bear76 New Member

    Jan 9, 2008
    okay, I wanted to give you guys an update. I called the ER at our local hospital(largest one locally without going to Wichita) and spoke to a doctor.

    She said that I was doing the right thing by waiting because without any redness or swelling they would not be able to diagnose it, and hence would not be able to treat it.

    Pretty much she told me to just keep an eye on it, and if it started swelling or turning red, black, purple, etc to come in for treatment asap. She said usually when a bite is going to be bad it starts to turn red right away. She doesn't think I got much venom in me, or that I may have gotten a "dry bite" where the spider bites but doesn't inject venom. She said the soreness was probably just a side effect(like when I get stung by a bee I'm sore in that area for a few days) and should go away within a day or two. She did also mention that the number of cases that get very bad are pretty rare, she said there are a LOT of brown recluse bites that are never even reported and are fine.

    Thanks for everyones concern & advice but I'm not too worried at this point, so as long as I make it through the next few days without any swelling or redness I should be in the clear  ;D
  6. TxCajun

    TxCajun Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator Supporter

    Sep 7, 2004
    OK, that sounds right and you did due diligence. Just wanted to be sure. ;)
  7. Jdeere562

    Jdeere562 Member

    Mar 26, 2005
    Don't ignore it for sure. See DR. immediately if it gets worse. I was sitting in the back yard July 24th, when my sweetie got home. She asked what the heck bit my ankle, I didn't even know a bite was there. Did not itch, hurt or anything. She recommended I go see the DR. That was on a Saturday afternoon.

    It got progressively worse, until Tuesday, I was about to go to the emergency room! My job sucks anymore, so I took my chances and got a DR. appt the next day, less expensive. The bite mark was about the size of a tennis ball, hot as heck to the touch, red and swelling. I Googled it that night, they call it a "bullseye" bite mark.

    DR. checked it out and drew three vials of blood. His best bet was a tick bite and Lyme's disease. Started me on antibiotics, and said we treat it for Lyme's disease, unless the tests come back to prove else wise. Even after one day taking the pills, it was noticeably better.

    Anyway, after 5 days, the Lymes's results came back. Negative! :cool: But I'm still taking antibiotics for a full month, just to make sure whatever is was is killed off. No idea of who bit me, but he's no friend for sure. >:(
  8. artimus_prime

    artimus_prime Well-Known Member

    Nov 18, 2007
    Central FL
    keep an eye on that! Had a buddy who got bit and ended up spending two weeks in the ER because he brushed it off.
  9. atm7819

    atm7819 New Member

    Aug 8, 2010
    Re: Chiggers :mad:

    Some of those pics are gruesome.  They must have some real nasty venom.  

    OP: Hope your bite turned  out OK.
  10. mydixiwrecked00

    mydixiwrecked00 New Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    one of my friends has been in the hospital now for 3 days because of a spider bite trip to the ER. he showed me his arm last weekend after it happened and i told him to go to the doctor and get it looked at, so of course he put it off and went to the local stab and stitch Er in town that has a bad track record. everyone knows not to go there, but him. They couldnt identify the bite anything past" sure looks like a spider bite" so they drained it and did the other ERish stuff and sent him home. couple days later and he was admitted to another hospital for a staff infection resulting from the first trip to the ER. i feel bad for telling him to get it looked at now.
  11. 535

    535 New Member

    Aug 21, 2010
    Are you sure it was a Brown Recluse and not a Brown Wolf spider that people often confuse with a Brown Recluse? The biggest problem here is that it's going to take a bit of time to determine if it is a BR bite as their venom is a digestive enzyme that slowly causes tissue to become necrotic causing large open ulcers and there is no "anti-venom" for this. the usual treatment is to surgically excise the ulcer before it spreads.
  12. Bear76

    Bear76 New Member

    Jan 9, 2008
    I know my insects, and yes it was a brown recluse however, no I did not react to it. It has been a couple weeks now and I never had any sort of reaction other than some pain the day of and the day after the bite.
  13. abuck50

    abuck50 Well-Known Member

    Aug 21, 2008
    NW Ohio
    I am glad you are ok. My dad suffered one of those bites. He had a bad sore there for quite some time.
  14. gordon11

    gordon11 Well-Known Member

    Dec 30, 2007
    Lucky break on that one. My ex-father inlaw got bit by one and it was quite a mess. Ended up needing surgery.
  15. Bear76

    Bear76 New Member

    Jan 9, 2008
    Yeah, I was pretty lucky. I took a picture of one of them this morning(finally got to use my macro lens!). He was stuck in my sink. He was then killed in my sink. I feel remorse about killing just about anything else on the planet, however brown recluses are not one of them.

  16. Blue_Moon

    Blue_Moon New Member

    Dec 22, 2004
    That is a good shot of the "fiddle" on his back. That is the way we learned to identify them when we were kids.
  17. gunjunkie

    gunjunkie Active Member

    Oct 3, 2010
      I'm not saying not to go to the Doctor, but an old folk remedy is to boil a small mouthed bottle, like a glass Coke or whiskey bottle. Stick it on the bite while the bottle is hot and hold it tight against the skin untill the bottle cools, causing a vacum that will pull a lot of the poison out. Especialy if your camping far from a town.
      A snake bite kit might also work but I think maybe the heat has something to do with it.
  18. historybuff

    historybuff Active Member

    Mar 11, 2009
    Yep, not all bites go bad.

    I was bit about 25 years ago when I was in college. A rather small portion of my stomach became necrotic, but eventually healed over although it was kind of gross for a good length of time. I didn't see a dr. because I was young, poor, and of course, thought I was immortal and nothing bad could ever possibly happen to me.

    I got away with it, which confirms my idea that God has a soft spot for people who may not always make the best decisions!