Brown Recluse Spider Bite Sends Woman to ER After Arachnids Infest Her Apartment

When Angela Wright woke up with a pain in her arm and bumps on her body, she visited the doctor to get her strange symptoms checked out. But when she started hallucinating a few days later, she knew something more serious was up.

Wright, from Brentwood, Tennessee, told medics she was suffering from a sharp pain in her chest, she told CBS News. Doctors said she had been bitten by a brown recluse spider, and she was suffering from neurotoxic effects of its venom. 

The bite had caused two blood clots to form in Wright’s body, which traveled to her lungs. “I was seconds from a stroke," Wright told CBS News.

brown-recluse-spider A brown recluse spider, similar to the arachnid which bit Angela Wright. Getty Images

Wright said her apartment was infested with spiders. A member of the building management team sprayed her apartment, but the spiders remained. She is now living at another home after she was unable to negotiate with the landlord to break the lease.

Because of the clots caused by the spider bites, Wright must take blood thinners for the rest of her life, and may not be able to have children, she said. She is also saddled with at least $10,000 worth of medical bills.

As the name suggests, brown recluse spiders generally keep to themselves and are found in spaces indoors and outdoors where they won’t be bothered, according to WebMD. In the U.S., they are most commonly found in the Midwest or South, and lurk in spaces like dark closets, attics, or under logs.

But they may bite if they feel trapped, and are one of two spiders in the U.S. which can cause serious health problems. Black widow spiders are believed to be the most poisonous in the U.S.

Read more: Incredible image shows hundreds of spider webs that look like field of "tiny spaceships"

The bodies of brown recluse spiders measure from around a quarter to three quarters of an inch, and are characterized by a violin-shaped pattern.

The adverse symptoms of a bite can take up to two days to develop, and there may not even be a mark on the area at first.

However, symptoms can include pain or redness at the site of the bite which can turn into a purple ulcer. Fever, chills, joint pain, nausea, feeling weak and in rare cases seizures or coma can occur. If a spider bites you, WedMD advises taking a photo of the arachnid to show a medical professional.