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Bee sting question: one day later I have multiple bumps, did I get stung more than once?
October 5, 2011 12:32 PM   Subscribe

Bee sting question: one day later I have multiple bumps, did I get stung more than once?

I got stung yesterday by a bee or wasp or hornet (something yellow and black, I can't tell the difference). Immediately afterwards I had a small white bump about the size of a mosquito bite with a red center. I tried to scrape the stinger out with a credit card, but I couldn't actually see the stinger as the sting was on the back of my arm above my elbow. It hurt like mad for about 3-4 hours and the area swelled up such that it looked like I had two elbows on the same arm.

I didn't have hives or anything. I've been stung by bees about a half dozen times in my life and this felt pretty typical, including the weird chills I tend to get right after being stung.

Today the swelling has gone down and the area where I was stung is itchy. The weird thing is the area now has 5-10 little bumps sort of like poison ivy, not just one welt. Did I get stung more than once? If so, what was it? I only saw one insect fly away, and I thought bees could only sting once. Or is this just a normal day-after bee sting skin reaction?

I'm not asking for medical advice, I'm just curious how/why this happened.
posted by tr0ubley to Health & Fitness (4 answers total)
 
Sounds like a lingering histamine reaction. You may have been stung by a wasp, and this is just the after-effect. If the area gets itchier, or doesn't continue to reduce, or starts to weep or show signs of infection, see a doctor.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:42 PM on October 5, 2011


Bees can only sting once, but wasps can sting multiple times. Or, as TheWhiteSkull said, the bumps may simply be a histamine reaction.
posted by Specklet at 12:57 PM on October 5, 2011


An oral antihistamine like benadryl will help. If it continues to get worse, go see a doctor. You can also get an antihistamine cream for the affected area, but an oral one is probably best.
posted by annsunny at 3:28 PM on October 5, 2011


the area swelled up such that it looked like I had two elbows on the same arm.

IANAD, but this does not sound normal to me. The last time I was stung by some kind of horrible wasp thing about a year ago, there was hardly any swelling.
posted by Lobster Garden at 3:29 PM on October 5, 2011


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