With the warmer weather coming, insects are starting to emerge again, and some of those will be spiders. They are all around us, rarely causing trouble, but once in a while, they can inflict a serious bite, as one family in Massachusetts found out.
Kristine Donovan’s 5-year old daughter Kailyn enjoyed playing outside with her siblings. One day, she came inside and Kristine noticed a little purple bruise on the back of her knee. She kept an eye on it but assumed it was just a bruise from a minor insect bite. Her husband Josh, a paramedic and firefighter agreed that it seemed harmless.
Two days later, the bruise hadn’t gone away but had turned into a line across her entire leg. The school called to say she had a fever, and her mother took her to her pediatrician. There, she was surprised the hear that Kaitlyn needed to be sent to the Emergency Room.
The hospital staff determined the little girl had suffered a spider bite and gave her antibiotics. Unfortunately, she wasn’t getting better. The family took her to UMass Memorial Center, where the doctor confirmed the bite was from a Black Widow spider, and the black mark they thought was a bruise was actually the spider’s venom.
“We didn’t know what to say. It’s not something you would expect, especially in Massachusettes,” said Josh.
Fortunately, the family had continued to take Kaitlyn to the doctor. Kristine gave advice to other parents in similar situations.