Brown Recluse?

Asked August 5, 2018, 12:43 AM EDT

This spider bit me this morning, I noticed my arm stinging and immediately swatted the spider off...it was smaller so either a small spider or baby. My neighbor said brown recluse so I went to urgent care and was given antibiotics. Being given a lot of contradicting advice (doctor said if no blister within 24 hours I’m in the clear, internet says it can take a few weeks). Please shed some light on this for me!! Thank you for your time

Orange County California

1 Response

You can relax on this one. THE brown recluse (BRS) is not known to occur at all in California----or AZ or NV, UT, OR, WA, ID and other states in that region. In NM, it has been verified once in Roswell but is otherwise scattered in the extreme eastern edges of NM. From there, BRS might be found to the east to the Atlantic and perhaps as far north as KY. This hasn't changed over the years since this map was drawn.

There are hundreds of species of spiders that are brown or tan or combinations of the these two colors.

Distinguishing features for BRS---
1) cephalothorax has a violin marking
2) spider has 6 eyes arranged in pairs
3) 8 spindly legs are covered in very fine, short 'hairs'

The initial little blister on your skin comes from the injection of venom plus local reaction to it. That happens when you get a shot of just about anything close to the skin. That's why the nurse or doctor pinches your skin just after removing the needle---to keep the injected fluid inside or else it will leak out.

Alas, antibiotics are handed out for just about anything as a precaution by doctors and practioners---whether you need it or not.

Your wound should be healed by now.....and without further complications unless it's itching. Then you might have a slight infection.