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Zbees
07-10-2008, 08:56 PM
If you read my other post "got whacked pretty good today" the other day...

I had to go to the MD today.

The sting I got in the armpit evolved into a red patch 4" by 7-8", red and pink and very hot to the touch. Said I might have a baterial infection.

Doctor put me on antibiotics. Anyone have this experience before? All my other stings are just small red spot that are getting smaller.

Dave

Ross
07-10-2008, 09:02 PM
It's pretty easy to get an infection in that area. Pulling an in-grown hair can do the same thing sometimes. Just unlucky I guess.

Joseph Clemens
07-10-2008, 09:14 PM
Evidence for most of my stings disappear in minutes, but every so often one will develop into the appearance of a small white-head pimple. But though I regularly got nailed in the armpits before I took to wearing long-sleeved T-shirts whenever I work the bees, I haven't yet had the kind of infection you describe. I hope yours gets better quickly.

DoubleB
07-10-2008, 10:46 PM
I too have had many stings without "fanfair". But back in March or April I got one that required a trip to the clinic and the Doc gave me some anti-biotics. Got it on the wrist and when the redness started going up the arm....I knew it was "something special"...really no big deal until the redness and swelling. Still having lots of rain here in the Stateline area.

mxr618
07-10-2008, 11:38 PM
Odd --

My buddy Mark and I are first year beeks. He was pulling bars from his KTBH and got stung four times, three of those under his watchband. His arm swelled up, and a week later, it had developed a rash. The doc said he didn't know for sure if the stings caused it but gave him a topical steroid cream.

Spooked him, too. I guess I'm the guy pulling his bars for the time being.

Hate to sound morbid, but can you post pictures?

Michael Palmer
07-11-2008, 05:29 AM
Anyone have this experience before?

I got stung on the neck once. First itched, and then opened up into a wet sore, about an inch in diameter. My beekeeping MD told me I had a Staph infection. He gave me a presciption for an antibiotic cream that cleared it up.

Sunshine
07-11-2008, 07:10 AM
Skin infections can be sneaky - couple of years back I though my red, swollen, painful hand was just an unusually bad reaction to a sting - until red streaks stared up the arm. My doctor diagnosed cellulitis, gave the first dose of antibiotics right in the office and threatened hospitalization if it didn't begin to clear up within a day. I got a better understanding of her concern when she explained that a sting is really no different from an injection using an unsterilized needle without cleaning the skin. Whatever was on the skin or the stinger is carried down into the tissue and we're probably lucky we don't get more infections. Now I wonder whether some memorable "bad sting reactions" aren't really infections which cleared up on their own.

Wikipedia has some pics which look a lot like bad stings and this info: "Cellulitis is caused by a type of bacteria entering by way of a break in the skin. This break need not be visible. Group A Streptococcus and Staphylococcus are the most common of these bacteria, which are part of the normal flora of the skin but cause no actual infection until the skin is broken. Predisposing conditions for cellulitis include insect bite..."

Dr.Wax
07-11-2008, 08:03 AM
a sting is really no different from an injection using an unsterilized needle without cleaning the skin

I couldn't have put it better myself.

I think a lot of bad reactions are complicated by infections which is why I always apply oregano oil, a potent antibiotic, to all my sting sites as soon as I can. I think activated charcoal would also do the trick.

pcelar
07-11-2008, 08:44 AM
I always apply oregano oil, a potent antibiotic
This is good idea. I wipe the spot with surgical antiseptic chlorhexidine sol.

Zbees
07-11-2008, 08:58 AM
It looks less bad today. it is less pink and seemed to have receded a bit. doctor drew a line around it and had me watch it to make sure it didn't grow.

Oh, I have pics, but they are at home. will show you all tonight!

dcross
07-11-2008, 12:14 PM
Didn't Bullseye Bill get cellulitis from a sting?

Ken&Andria
07-11-2008, 01:14 PM
My wife is a type-1 diabetic, so her imune system isn't all that great. Just about everytime she gets stung, it gets infected and she's off to the doctor for antibiotics. She's pretty much left the hive work up to me from now on....The stings are just to much of a hassle for her.

BULLSEYE BILL
07-11-2008, 06:49 PM
Didn't Bullseye Bill get cellulitis from a sting?

http://www.beesource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=193479&highlight=sting%2C+infection

I've had it three times now. :(

Update on the knuckle; It's still enlarged from what it was, still a bit stiff but I can now fully make a fist, and is still painful after three years. But, hey, I still got it and it works! I'm pretty lucky.

Brent Bean
07-12-2008, 01:29 AM
The only time I have had problems if I scratch the sting spot which leaves it more venerable for infection.

RayMarler
07-12-2008, 02:11 AM
Try puting honey on the sting, it works on burns and cuts too. It seals the wound, and sucks it out, blocks oxygen from entering, therefore making it a good anti biotic

beegee
07-12-2008, 07:41 PM
I got stung on the back of the neck last August. The welt got infected and a round of antibiotics only partially cured it. Here it is almost August again and I still have a knot there but it's almost healed. I also got stung on the Adam's apple and it took about 4 months to heal. If I get stung on the face or hands or arms or anywhere else, I don't hardly get a welt. For some reason, getting stung on the neck reacts differently.

pcelar
07-12-2008, 08:05 PM
Try puting honey on the sting, it works on burns and cuts too. It seals the wound, and sucks it out, blocks oxygen from entering, therefore making it a good anti biotic
Maybe because honey is hygroscopic.

Bizzybee
07-12-2008, 08:19 PM
I occasionally have had problems with stings when the tip of the sting breaks off and stays embedded. It has gotten infected everytime it's happened. I make a habit of checking for it now whenever I get stung. It's not always easy to tell and even harder to remove sometimes. Good it doesn't happen too often! Stings are gone in a couple of minutes, those last for days.........

Ted
07-13-2008, 06:09 AM
I got stung on the neck once. First itched, and then opened up into a wet sore, about an inch in diameter. My beekeeping MD told me I had a Staph infection. He gave me a prescription for an antibiotic cream that cleared it up.

I like Mike got stung last fall wile puling honey, once on the (R) wrist, and under the chin didn't think much about it until the stings did not heal up. after months of home remedies and my wrist swollen I went to the DR where at one look she determined that I also had a staph infection but she called it ( MIRSA ) after two weeks of going to the clinic getting shots in first one check then the other , antibiotic Cream as well as oral antibiotics I was about two mounts getting over this. BEE careful if it looks bad and dose not heal up see a DOC!!!!!!!!!!

Keith Benson
07-13-2008, 08:49 AM
Skin is a barrier. It is also popualted by loads of bacteria, which is OK, if the barrier is intact.

Then along comes a bee and she pierces the barrier, making a puncture wound, the stinger taking whatever bacteria are present at the point of injection in with it, and to make matters worse she injects some agents that cause some damage/death to the cells in the immediate area. Beekeeping is hot and sweaty work, you prolly have a greater than normal level of bacteria and debris on you (take whiff if you don't believe me) at the time you get stung and viola, you might get a staph infection. Most of the time you don't, but it can happen.

In a small number of stinging cases the bacteria will reproduce faster than you can control them and an infection will result, generally localized, sometimes not. In some percentage of those cases you may need some antimicrobial support to limit the infection.

Been there, done that - and had to argue with the nurse that it was in fact a honeybee that stung me. She was adamant that bees rarely sting and that it was probably a wasp. I appreciated her determined defense of our little friends, though she seemed a little miffed when I explained that not only was it a honeybee, but my honeybee to boot. Can't win sometimes.

Keith

Troy
07-13-2008, 08:55 AM
MRSA is bad stuff.

From this page http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/mrsa/DS00735

"MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. It's a strain of staph that's resistant to the broad-spectrum antibiotics commonly used to treat it. MRSA can be fatal."

Now it is only fatal in very aggressive cases that have been let go too long - with hospitalization and agressive treatment with more advanced anti-biotics, it can be cured, but don't let it go too long.

A guy I work with had surgery, got MRSA and it somehow got into his hip joint. He was lucky to live through that and he limped for over a year. he was quite sick for the first 4 months from the antibiotics.

pcelar
07-13-2008, 10:07 AM
A guy I work with had surgery, got MRSA and it somehow got into his hip joint. He was lucky to live through that and he limped for over a year. he was quite sick for the first 4 months from the antibiotics.
I am wandering what does this, (nosocomial infection), have to do with simple bee sting?

SantaCruzBee
07-13-2008, 12:11 PM
Nosocomial MRSA doesn't have much to do with a "simple bee sting." However, at least in my area, San Francisco Bay Area and the Central Coast, MRSA now represents at least half of the community acquired Staph skin infections. It remains relatively easy to treat if caught early and the patient is not allergic to Bactrim/Septra, but it is potentially very serious and there seem to be more cases which are very aggressive.

As many people have correctly noted in earlier posts, our skin has a community of bacteria and fungi, etc., on it normally. Most exist there happily, but breaks in the skin, just by the simple sting itself and more importantly the abrasions/breaks in the skin we cause by scratching, allow some, esp. Staph and Strep, to find their way into the lower layers of skin and potentially wreak havoc/cause infection.s

pcelar
07-13-2008, 04:47 PM
However, at least in my area, San Francisco Bay Area and the Central Coast, MRSA now represents at least half of the community acquired Staph skin infections. It remains relatively easy to treat if caught early and the patient is not allergic to Bactrim/Septra, but it is potentially very serious and there seem to be more cases which are very aggressive.
Now we are talking about common self limiting staphylococcal infections (which are easily treated with simple AB's) and not nosocomial staphylococcal infections which are not impressed by almost any known AB.

Oldbee
07-13-2008, 06:51 PM
So far I have not had any major problems with bee stings. I 'grew up' in the country, so maybe I have some immunity to these kinds of things/stings. Does this mean we should have some alcohol swabs or similar product on hand shortly after inspecting our bees; like epi-pens for those who might be more allergic? I kind of like the idea of putting a dab of honey on it though.