Thursday, March 05, 2009

Updating Spiders

Last October we thought we were infested with spiders. I wrote about our adventures here and here. A lot has happened since then. We bought a new mattress (first one in 30 plus years). We sprayed for the little critters. I slept on my own while we took measures to clear the house.

Now I know that I killed a spider on my ear at 2 am or so, just after the doctor told me that my swellings looked like a spider bite. So our actions were more or less rational. Besides, we found several friends with similar stories. Maybe there was a spider or two involved!

But long after we were sure that the spiders were gone, the apparent bites continued. Finally I had to conclude that some sort of allergic reaction was under way. I tried avoiding peanuts, milk, msg, all the usual suspects. The effort brought no more relief from the swellings than sleeping in another room far away from my sweetie had.

Finally I ended up at the allergist's office, where my arm was swabbed and pricked with 30 or so substances. Only the histamine prick formed a reaction, which said that I was normal. But my arm was itchy the next day where they pricked and smeared me! Blood tests ruled out any other underlying cause, and the reactions continued unabated.

Finally two weeks ago they did start to abate, and finally I am more or less clear of reactions. They may return, but for the moment they have receded. The most likely culprit seems to be some low level allergic reaction, exacerbated by stress. Well, it has been a stressful six months, harder perhaps than any similar period that I've been through. But spider bites? I ask you!

Anyway, they are gone for a bit now. Some time I may try to describe what stress feels like, besides just itchy!


KGMom said...

Hmmmm--I am thinking that one test was seriously flawed. You said it meant that you are normal. See what I mean?
Anyway, the short answer is--yes, stress can cause itching. But, would it cause bite marks too?
Well, if nothing else, it was time to get a new mattress!

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