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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Harrisburg, PA
    Posts
    69

    Default Fever following multiple stings

    I checked on my bees this weekend and they were much more fiesty that usual. I ended up getting stung way more than I've been stung before. Typically I may get one or two and that has never seemed to be a problem. This weekend I got stung 7 times. About 12 hours later I developed a fever, a really bad headache, and weakness. So I'm trying to determine if this was cause by the stings, or if it's just a bug. Excuse the pun.

    I've been stung before and never had any reaction other than the typical swelling and localized reaction. I'm not allergic to bee stings as I've been stung numberous times before. I've just never been stung by this many at one time. Could the stings cause this, or am I just being paranoid?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Iowa
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    546

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    Quote Originally Posted by TrvVn5 View Post
    I checked on my bees this weekend and they were much more fiesty that usual. I ended up getting stung way more than I've been stung before. Typically I may get one or two and that has never seemed to be a problem. This weekend I got stung 7 times. About 12 hours later I developed a fever, a really bad headache, and weakness. So I'm trying to determine if this was cause by the stings, or if it's just a bug. Excuse the pun.

    I've been stung before and never had any reaction other than the typical swelling and localized reaction. I'm not allergic to bee stings as I've been stung numberous times before. I've just never been stung by this many at one time. Could the stings cause this, or am I just being paranoid?
    There was some very interesting studies posted on here that I found when searching about this kind of stuff. I wish I would have bookmarked it. What I gleaned from it was... allergic reactions are tricky devils and not to be fooled with. It's probably time to see a specialist and see what they think? Have an EpiPen on hand just in case at the very least.

    I took a couple stings just on the hand side of my wrist and my hand swelled so bad that I could not close my fist. I did not have a "body" fever, but my hand was in the 102-103 degree range quite often. I iced it a lot and that seemed to help greatly. Of course your reaction seems indicative of a more full body response, which is something to take seriously.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Spanish Fork, UT, USA
    Posts
    373

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I have a first aid kit in my bee truck that contains Benadryl and an EpiPen. Bee sting reactions can very from minor to a medium localized reaction. The most severe being anaphylactic shock. I have witnessed all three of these reactions in people I know. Anaphylactic shock will usually happen within thirty minutes of getting stung. I also know people that get stung and are swollen and sick for two or three days. It sounds like what happened to you was a little more severe reaction than your used to. If you are worried schedule an appointment with an allergy doctor.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,347

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I would see if your allergist. I've recieved several stings in a day, and my bodies normal response is localized, swelling, ichiness, heat, dull pain, etc. After 48 hrs the area is back to normal.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Manassas, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    801

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    One sting on my left wrist recently caused my left forearm to swell. I wish I'd had the thermal imager with me ... even my wife could tell my forearm was WAY warmer than the rest of me. I don't usually react that much, but I had trouble getting this one out and would up pinching it out, which probably gave me a heavier dose of venom than usual.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    rensselaer, ny, USA
    Posts
    432

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I don't know if the fever and headache are due to the stings, but seeing that you from PA, I wondered whether you have had any tick bites within the last two weeks?

    I am just getting over my second bout of Anaplasmosis in the past two years. It's carried by the same ticks that also carry Lyme, but it's a completely different disease. It doesn't give you the characteristic red bull's eye rash. And unlike Lyme, it is transmitted almost immediately if you are bitten by a carrier-tick. Lyme usually takes a prolonged, 12-72 hour long bite.

    The characteristic symptoms of Anaplasmosis are: a severe headache; unproductive, but intense nausea; a hacking cough; strong feeling of weakness and malaise and VERY high fever (mine gets into the 103-105F range.) It takes 7-14 days to incubate after the bite. Younger people are less affected, than older people, but untreated it can be fatal or lead to organ failure. It causes some characteristic changes in ordinary bloodwork: liver function numbers are elevated (indicating liver function is disturbed) and platelet (red blood cells) counts are very low. Low enough that transfusions are sometimes considered. And white cell counts are only mildly elevated considering the seriousness of the infection. There is a specific blood test for it, but it takes awhile to get it back so usually based on symptoms, routine blood work, and tick exposure it will be treated immediately. The treatment is simple, reasonably cheap and very effective: doxycycline pills. And unlike Lyme there are no long-term, chronic issues with it. If you think this might be the explanation of your symptoms, see your doc. The fever and headache may be something else than a reaction to the stings.

    From my experience with it, if you've got Anaplasmosis, you'll feel sick as a dog. But start feeling much better within 24 hours of starting treatment.

    Be well!

    Enj.
    Last edited by Barry; 07-07-2014 at 03:50 PM. Reason: language

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Montgomery county, MD
    Posts
    47

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I usually have a fever if I get multiple stings at once. I get stung all the time, and it's only when I get multiples that I get a fever. it lasts 12 hr or less. I also have relatively large local reactions and they haven't gotten worse or better with more stings.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    554

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    Fever is just one of the ways a body reacts to the poison. Localized reactions to a sting creates a raised temp in the area of the sting in reaction to the poison. When enough of the poison enters the blood stream and spreads thru the body, it creates a wider area of response, hence the body fever.

    I react to stings pretty badly. I took two hits to the arm thru the suit this weekend, one on the wrist and one above the elbow. The elbow one did not swell much. The wrist one resulted in swelling from my hand back to the elbow, lots of fluid buildup on day 2. Lots of heat too. Day 3, swelling went back down and a hard knot formed where the stings were about the size of a pencil eraser and itching like a mosquito bite.

    I did have another spot. I stuck a dry stinger in my suit against the forearm of the other arm. No bee attached, but enough poison left in the stinger to create a red spot and minor skin irritation.

    Something happened when I was working a hive Friday morning, I was trying to remove a frame of eggs to requeen a queenless nuc. When I pulled the frame, the bees came out in mass and started nailing my suit. I released the frame and backed off, a cloud of bees coming up my arm. The sleeve had about 20 stingers in it and guts from bees pulling away. When I looked at the suit later, the other sleeve and the hat had stingers too. Later, when I worked another location, I noticed a pin prick on the other arm. It was from one of the stingers left in the suit and it did cause the red spot I mentioned. Not a full dose as it was only a stinger, not a sac or a bee attached pumping more venom into the wound.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
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    3,741

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    The prudent thing to do is to see your doctor. I've had lots of different reactions. Swelling, even to the point of not being able to close a joint is not uncommon. For me, it's not a reaction, it's a condition. That said, it might be different for you. One or two conversations with your doc will help you know what your own body is telling you. As much as I love the advice given here on Beesource, I personally believe that an exam and a conversation with the physician who takes care of you goes a lot further.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Stilwell, KS
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    1,726

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    Quote Originally Posted by TrvVn5 View Post
    I checked on my bees this weekend and they were much more fiesty that usual. I ended up getting stung way more than I've been stung before. Typically I may get one or two and that has never seemed to be a problem. This weekend I got stung 7 times. About 12 hours later I developed a fever, a really bad headache, and weakness. d?
    p
    How did you manage to get stung 7 times?
    Honey Badger Don't Care ಠ_ಠ ~=[,,_,,]:3

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Santa barbara, CA
    Posts
    151

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    TrvVn5- How high was the fever exactly?
    If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.
    Abraham Maslow

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    2,467

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    A fever is the body's reaction to an infection. And yes you can get an infection from bee stingers. Too much of a coincidence to be a "bug" if you ask me.
    See a Doc.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Beeman View Post
    A fever is the body's reaction to an infection. And yes you can get an infection from bee stingers.
    That is the most probable reason for the fever. It happens.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    554

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    It is not a fever due to an infection, it is a temperature elevation due to the release of histamines that react to the poison. Kind of the same thing, but not really. It is a foreign invasion to the body, but not an infection persay.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    When I get stings and I do forget to remove the stinger or I simply didn't notice it, and leave it in the skin for a day, and it gets infected, I get fever. OK, first it starts to itch, it gets red and then I get infection-like symptoms. But normally I do not get the slightest fever. Since one cannot get resistant to histamin, I should have fever/temperature elevation all the time, isn't it? On the other hand, when I started beekeeping and my arms and all were swollen, I didn't had fever, either. Can't see this with my beginners I care for, either. And so on.

    People are of course different, as is with bees. But if you normally do not get any fever when receiving stings and one single time you get fever, I reckon it is most likely that the puncturing by the sting got infected.

    What I do is, I remove the stinger, rub some honey and propolis over it and am done. (That is, I rub my sticky fingers over it, another advantage of working bare hand. You do have propolis on your fingers all the time.)

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Bunker Hill, IL
    Posts
    495

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I hived a swarm last thrus. It was up on my apple tree about 15'. climbed up my ladder put the box on the top, positioned everything nicely... promptly shook them directly ontop my head! I was wearing my bee jacket/veil combo but didnt bother with long pants or socks..... that was a mistake.... took 25 stings to the left leg and about 5 to the right.

    Took benidryl shortly afterward and went about my day. Nothing out of the normal for me in the way of symptoms but Toward evening the swelling started and by dinner time i couldnt walk on my left leg due to swelling. I tried to keep it iced and elevated. You could feel my leg was physically hot to the touch. Iceing it just made me really cold cause i was chilling all the blood that my body was pumping in down there to deal with the venom.

    5 days later and my foot is still slightly swollen.

    Previous to that the most i think ive had is about 5 or 6. When i accidentally backed the tractor into the hive knocking it over and they found me before i could leave the area and get my suit on to fix them.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Stilwell, KS
    Posts
    1,726

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    Quote Originally Posted by schmism View Post
    You could feel my leg was physically hot to the touch. Iceing it just made me really cold cause i was chilling all the blood that my body was pumping in down there to deal with the venom.
    I get the same effect; sting area is red and hot to the touch. I don't know if I would call it a fever, but it is definitely hot.
    Honey Badger Don't Care ಠ_ಠ ~=[,,_,,]:3

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Manassas, Virginia, USA
    Posts
    801

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    I got stung on my left hand this morning, which is a waste because the right hand is the one with arthritis. Anyway, it was a good excuse to whip out the thermal imager. The stung area is several degrees warmer than the corresponding area on the right hand. The area is mildly puffy and doesn't hurt appreciably, but the temperature difference shows up nicely.

    HandSting.jpg

    HandStingData.jpg

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Mount Airy, Frederick county, MD, USA
    Posts
    54

    Default Re: Fever following multiple stings

    What you (not the OP but some later writers) are describing is actually normal and NOT a fever.

    A fever is a whole body response to prostaglandins, a hormone released in response to an infection or severe inflammation, that cross the blood-brain barrier and cause the temperature regulatory center in the hypothalamus to reset to something 101 or greater (some of my anxious mom friends consider 99 a fever, but most medical professionals consider 101 a fever).

    Localized inflammation is characterized by redness, swelling, pain, loss of function and heat, all secondary to increased blood flow to the area affected by a cut, scrape, burn, sting, etc., and is normal unless accompanied by an infection.
    Last edited by SpringGreen; 07-21-2014 at 04:11 PM. Reason: Clarification
    Newbee with three hives and two nucs, zone 6b

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