Progression and healing of a spider bite

Ok, this is not really study notes, it is just the story of my spider bite.  Well, best guess is a spider bite.  I didn’t feel any bite. 

5-21-10. This is about 6 hours after the first stinging sensation, not a specific event, just noticed that it was stinging like a burn.

5-22-10.  This is about 30 hours after and this is when it was decided to visit the ER.

5-22-10.  The ER doctor (who looked like Clark Kent) suspected a jellyfish sting since it was first noticed after getting out of the ocean.  Bactrim (Sulfameth/Trimethoprim 800/160) was prescribed in case there was some staph infection involvement or to prevent it.  Augmentin (Amox-Clav 875 mg) also prescribed as a broad spectrum antibiotic because the source of the problem was not really known.  Diagnosis – Cellulitis.  Follow up with PP.  (The tiny blue line around the periphery is where we drew a circle with a pen to track enlargement or reduction)

 5-25-10. Morning of day 4 or about 66 hours after noticing the “stinging” sensation.  A visit to the primary physician brought this comment from the doctor “Oh my!  I can’t do nothing with that”.  He prescribed Doxycycline Hyclate 100 mg which covers tick bites and spider bites.  He could not decide whether or not to stop the Augmentin; finally decided to continue it.  He tried to find a surgeon to refer me to because it needed to be debrided.  No luck.  Was advised to go to Duke ER the next morning to find a surgeon to look at the bite.  This picture was taken at the ER (hour 80).  The PA I saw said that the current thought process was not to debride but to let it heal naturally with the help of the Doxycycline [well, maybe this is “study notes” after all, I should forward this link to my PP].  Augmentin was stopped.

 5-26-10. The blisters finally burst.  (The dark streaks to the left are adhesive from tape used to keep it covered).

Day 75-27-10; turned the curve.  The purple ecchymotic area has lost some color and receded somewhat.


  5-29-10; after leaving it uncovered all night…. think I should cover it back up.


6-3-10 scab peeling off, new pink skin beneath!


6-21-10 Day 30

11 Responses to Progression and healing of a spider bite

  1. Whew, this looks extremely painful. I think one of my fears is to get bit by a spider and have this happen to me. Glad you got better! (:

  2. brandon bradley says:

    Excellent photos and descriptions of treatments

  3. big c says:

    what kind of spider was it

  4. Holly says:

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. Florida says:

    Wonderful site. A lot of useful information here.
    I’m sending it to some pals ans also sharing in delicious.

    And of course, thanks to your sweat!

  6. mamala05 says:

    I really appreciate seeing this progression – I am currently experiencing the same thing. No idea what bit me, 4 bites in a cluster, and it is progressing like yours, only I have not seen a doctor yet. Mine is now in about day 10 – not sure since I don’t know when the bites occurred. Thanks for posting these pics and giving such a good description!

  7. amy47 says:

    Recommend going to the doctor! A quick trip to the doctor could definitely prevent serious problem that an infection may cause later. I would only skip the doctor if the redness and heat (warmth of the skin at the bite) are already receding.

  8. SOC says:

    This looks pretty much identical to what I’m experiencing right now on the back of my thigh. My day 4 (big blisters surrounded by purple) looks just like your day 4 did. On day 2 I was experience chills, fever (101+), and fatigue.

    Went to my PP yesterday (day 3). He suspected a spider bite and prescribed 2 weeks of Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim, which I started yesterday. The fever and chills are gone, so hopefully I’m on the road to recovery.

    Thanks for documenting your experience!

  9. etarte says:

    Thank you for sharing! My bite was much less severe, but I can still see the similarities, which tell me that my bite is on the mend and doing great.

    For anyone who gets a spider bite and recognizes it, I recommend putting on black ointment (NOT black salve, they’re not the same). Here is the brand that I use:

    There are also a few other home remedies that can take out the poison. If it gets worse, obviously don’t wait to see a doctor. Your bite got so bad so quickly. I’m glad that you’re ok, and that the bite area healed really well!

  10. Pingback: infection disease wound care part 1 | My Health

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