Quick and effective remedies for bee and wasp stings. The tenth part in the series on handling common medical emergencies.

Bees and wasps inject venom by stinging. The stinger is sometimes left in the skin. The venom causes local pain and swelling. In rare cases, a severe allergic reaction may develop and be fatal.

Symptoms

Pain, redness, itchiness and swelling at the site

Indications of severe reaction include:

Swelling around eyes and lips

Difficulty in breathing or wheezing

Abdominal pain

Rapid drop in blood pressure (shock).

Do’s

If a stinger is present in the skin, quickly scrape it out.

Observe a person for at least 30 minutes to see if he/she develops a severe reaction.

Activate emergency medical response.

Ask if he/she is carrying a prescribed epinephrine auto-injector or EPI-PEN.

If so, assist him in using it.

Don’ts

Do not remove the stinger with a plucker or finger nails. This breaks the stinger and leads to the venom spreading further.

Extract from Medical Emergency Handbook, VIVO Healthcare, Rs.199. To buy the book, contact VIVO Healthcare, DLF City Club, DLF City Phase 4, Gurgaon 122009. Ph: +91-124-4365848 +91-8860004734. E-mail: enquiry@vivohealthcare.com or info@vivohealthcare.com