What You May Not Know about a Spider Bite Bruise

Many people have a fear of the eight legged arachnids, and anyone who has experienced a serious spider bite, bruise and pain included, will say that fear is vindicated.  While all spiders are poisonous, certain arachnids carry more potent venom than others that can cause health issues.  When a bruise appears along with the bite, it should be examined by a doctor.

Spiders are found in just about every corner of the world.  There are numerous varieties of spiders, many of which are too small or possess venom that is too weak to do any type of harm if they should have cause to bite.  Contrary to some of the horror movies that have been made about arachnids, they do not view humans as prey and set out to attack them without provocation.  Biting humans is an instinctive defensive measure spiders use when they feel threatened.  Indeed, most of the spider bites received by humans go unnoticed.  There are a certain group of spiders that do possess harmful venom, however, and in quantities that can cause symptoms in the humans that they bite. 

Common symptoms of spider bites

It is important to note first that the majority of spiders do not have mouth parts large enough or strong enough to even penetrate the skin. Most spiders have fangs which inflict two miniscule puncture wounds in the skin, generally in close proximity to each other.  Venom is injected into the wounds through the biting parts of the mouth.  Reactions to the venom will depend on the type of spider, but common symptoms are redness, warmth in the area of the bite, itchiness and sometimes pain.  In some cases, symptoms can get worse after 12 to 24 hours; with the bite area exhibiting a spreading of the redness, drainage from the wound, increased pain, numbness or tingling as well as a discoloration indicating a spider bite bruise.  This bruise may resemble a bulls eye or a halo around the wound.

More serious spider bites

In the United States, there are two types of spiders that are responsible for any serious reactions and injury that have occurred to people:

  1. Black widow spiders can be found in any area of the United States.   Whereas most spider bites are not even noticeable, the widow bite will cause a sharp pain, followed by a numbing pain around the wound.  The venom can create muscle spasms, nausea, extreme respiratory difficulties, sweating, weakness and anxiety, among other symptoms. 

  2. Brown recluse spider bites may not cause any sensation at all immediately, but will develop and increase in intensity within about an hour’s time.  Bruising will occur around the punctures; itching is a common sensation not only to the affected area, but throughout the body in some.  The wound will form a blister that is surrounded by the spider bite bruise.  Blood fills the blister which grows larger before finally bursting open, leaving a large, deep scar.  In the worse case scenarios, nausea, chills, blood disorders and kidney failure could develop.

When a spider bite is recognized or suspected, it is wise to seek a doctor’s attention to ensure that more serious complications do not develop.  If it is possible, capturing the spider whether dead or alive will assist the doctor in diagnosing the type of spider bite with which they are dealing and help to determine treatment. 

It should be noted that spiders are extremely beneficial creatures that control the populations of numerous insects in the world.  Occasionally through a totally chance encounter, humans are bitten by spiders and experience unpleasant and painful symptoms. Most of the time, however, spiders and humans are able to live side by side with little notice of one another in the world.


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