A Providence resident whose leg is getting worse despite antibiotics may have been bit by a brown recluse spider.
Matthew Ricci was sitting in his yard and felt something on his leg and brushed it off. The next day it was swollen and started getting worse.
“I first looked it up myself, I looked up the symptoms and images and I matched them up and I went to the one clinic and they they didn’t know what it was so they sent me to the hospital,” Ricci told WPRI.
Ricci is on several antibiotics but his condition is worsening, and he plans on going back to the doctor soon.
According to the Department of Entomology at the University of California, Riverside, brown rescule spiders are rarely found outside the Midwest and southern part of the western United States.
“If you do not live in any of the colored areas in the map, then it is HIGHLY UNLIKELY that you have a recluse spider,” according to the department. ” It is POSSIBLE but incredibly unlikely.”
The initial bite from the spider is painless, according to Mike Potter, an entomologist at the University of Kentucky’s College of Agriculture. “Oftentimes the victim is unaware until 3 to 8 hours later when the bite site may become red, swollen, and tender.”
It’s tough to diagnosis a bite from the wound alone, according to Potter.
Ricci said that the doctors at the hospital agreed with him that it was a brown recluse spider bite.
“It’s uncomfortable but it’s good knowing that other people, if the same thing happened to them, they would probably know how to treat it,” Ricci told NBC.