A black widow bit 5-year-old Kailyn Donovan from Mendon, Massachusetts, on her leg. At first, her mother thought it was a bruise, but it shortly turned into a red line and then black, forcing her to drive Kailyn to the hospital. Kailyn is expected to make a full recovery.

Kailyn’s mother Kaitlyn believes that the spider bit her child when she was playing in the family backyard, mainly because they had not gone anywhere far from their home. Apparently, the girl did not know that she was bitten, which suggests that the spider might have been in her jeans.

Image credit: BBC News
Image credit: BBC News

Enduring a black widow’s bite

They took Kailyn to UMass Memorial Hospital, where it doctors confirmed that a black widow bit her. Her flesh was turning black, but she kept a good attitude throughout the entire process. Now, Kristine says her daughter’s happy that she’s no longer in the hospital.

According to doctors, the wound should heal completely without leaving a scar, just in time for when Kailyn starts going to kindergarten in September.

The incident shook up Kailyn’s family. They took steps to spray the home in case there are more spiders:

“We’re going to be spraying, and they’re going to come in the house and do some spraying in here too. But the doctor said it definitely was outside, they don’t chase people. It probably was bothered. We’ve been doing a lot of yard work, it probably upset one of them and she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time,” stated Kristine to the Boston Globe.

Black widows enjoy temperatures of 70 degrees or higher. They spin irregular webs at ground level, usually near stones, debris, firewood piles, and small bushes. Most black widow bites are from females, which bite in defense when trying to protect themselves or their eggs.

The bite of a black widow can lead to fever, nausea, hypertension, and sweating. The only people that die from black widow bites tend to be babies, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems. One can usually prevent most symptoms if the right treatment is available at the right time.

The best way to prevent being bit by a black widow is to clean the house of any place where they might hide. It is also recommended always to wear gloves when handling firewood or construction debris. The black female widow tends to remain by her web, only retreating to wait for its prey.

The eggs are half an inch long and oval-shaped. The sacs can hold anything between 20 and 750 eggs, which should incubate after 20 days of being laid.

In the case of a black widow bite, the area should be washed with water and soap. It is also useful to apply an ice pack wrapped in cloth to the area and also taking a pain reliever. After applying first aid, it is recommended to visit a doctor to have the spider’s venom extracted.

Source: Boston Globe