First Aid for Brown Recluse Spiders

Often found in the southern states in hot, dry and abandoned places, the brown recluse is a dangerous spider whose bites require quick medical attention before they become necrotic or rotting. Bites from these spiders don’t always appear right away, so keeping an eye out for the symptoms is the best way to secure quality medical care that can save your life.


What does a Brown Recluse Spider look like:

  • A largish, half -inch brown spider
  • Long, dark violin shaped mark on the head and abdomen


What are the symptoms of a Brown Recluse bite?

Often Brown Recluse bites do not occur with pain and you may not know you’ve been bitten till other symptoms occur.

  • Reddened skin followed by a large blister
  • Mild to intense pain and itching
  • An ulcer at the site of the bit
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Skin rash of tiny, flat purple spots
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Joint Pain


How can I treat a Brown Recluse Bite?

  • Seek emergency medical treatment immediately. Try to bring the body of the spider if you can safely, but otherwise be prepared to describe its appearance to the doctor.
  • DO NOT apply a tourniquet. These often cause more harm than good.
  • Remain calm.
  • Apply ice.
  • Elevate the area and avoid  movement as much as possible.
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