A woman in the U.K. was recently left with a gaping hole in her armpit after she was bitten by a venomous spider that had been hiding in a sofa. Louise Edwards, 49, said the sofa had been outside in a shed, and that when she went to move it, she saw a few spiders, but didn’t think anything of it and didn’t feel any bite.
By the next day, however, she realized she had a raised red spot under her arm that “felt like a burn.” Two days later, she told Kennedy News and Media she saw two little holes and was suffering from “shooting pains” down her arm.
She began taking pain medication but the lump kept growing and looked ready to pop, so she put a hot compress on it, which she said only aggravated it more.
“I did the hot compress first thinking that would draw out the poison but it just made it feel increased the burning sensation so then I had to put ice on it because it was absolute agony,” she told Kennedy News and Media.
She sought medical attention at a clinic which referred her to University Hospital of Wales, where doctors scooped out her infected skin.
“They removed the capsule of the abscess, which was the size of a golf ball, and I was left with a one-and-a-half-inch hole in my arm,” she told the outlet.
Edwards deduced that she had been bitten when she put a sofa cushion under her arm. The likely culprit was a false widow spider, which typically has a mild effect on humans.
The woman was then placed on antibiotics to clear her infection and is urging others to seek medical attention quickly if they suspect a bite.
“My advice would be to keep an eye on it and if it becomes inflamed get it checked out straight away,” she warned.