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How to manage bee stings?

How to manage bee stings?

When a bee stings us, it's normally to experience body reaction, which consists mainly of local pain, redness and swelling around the sting site.

Proper management of bee stings requires the following steps:

  1. Removal of the bee's stinger immediately.
  2. Cleaning the sting site with tap water.
  3. Applying ice packs over the sting site.
  4. You can apply calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream over the sting site to ease the symptoms.
  5. If the pain continues, or if you noticed further extension of the swelling and redness, you should consult a doctor as soon as possible.

In some cases, bee stings may cause anaphylactic reaction, which is an allergy to be stings, leading to severe allergic reaction, manifested with the following clinical signs:

  • Swelling of the face, mouth and throat.
  • Wheezy chest due to swelling of the airways.
  • Swallowing difficulty due to pharyngeal swelling.
  • Hives.
  • Tachycardia.
  • Dizziness, disturbed level of consciousness up to loss of consciousness.

This case is an emergency and life-threatening, so rapid intervention is very important and life-saving. At first, call emergency immediately. While waiting the ambulance, antihistaminic drugs and epinephrine (if available) seem to be the most appropriate medical choices to control the anaphylactic reaction. Poor or slow management of anaphylactic reaction results in anaphylactic shock which leads to cardiac arrest and death.


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