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Man Gets Mysterious Bruises, Almost Dies After Bug Bite

A man was bitten by some kind of bug, and as a result his arm erupted into painful bruises. He says he's never seen a bug like that before, and doctors are stumped trying to figure out what it was, and what it did to him. He's part of a new case study.

Thomas Jay from Chandler, Arizona was engaged in a common household chore he'd probably done hundreds of times before: he was taking out the trash. When he looked down on his arm, he was startled to see an insect that he didn't recognize.

In the split second that it took his mind to register that he was seeing an unfamiliar bug, he was bitten.

“I just felt this excruciating pinch, this pressure, this bite or a sting … and [I] immediately went and swatted the bug off,” he said to KTVK of Phoenix.

That was the beginning of the problem. The painful bug bite just continuously got worse, and terrible black and red bruises made their way down Jay's arm. He looked like someone had beaten his arm with a mallet, they were so bad.

“It started with one little round circle and became an emergency in a matter of hours,” said Jay's wife, Dee Petrov. She reports that they went to several emergency rooms and hospitals over the next 24 hours.

Petrov says that, according to her husband, the insect resembled the 'camel spider', known also by its scientific name, solpugid. They're usually found in warm and arid habitats. While the bug looked similar to this type of spider, Jay says it's not an exact match and he can't be sure.

Doctors can't be sure either. They say they've never seen anything like Jay's violent reaction. They biopsied tissue from the man's arm and are waiting for the results.

“We are still praying there are no long-term effects, but there are still issues with the arm and more medical tests and doctors to see,” said Petrov, who is providing updates of Jay's condition on Facebook.

“I hope to give an overall story at some point with pictures to help anyone who this may happen to in the future … to be prepared,” Petrov wrote on Facebook. “We just don’t know that much about venom and how anyone will react.”

Jay has signed on with a medical team to become a case study. Since doing so, he says treatment has improved. “Even though they may not be able to figure out what it was, they might be able to help other individuals as they learn from this situation,” said Jay.

Petrov has started a GoFundMe page to get help with some of Jay's skyrocketing medical bills. In a recent Facebook update, she reports, “Thomas is doing better and we have been overwhelmed with information. Still researching and talking with professionals.”

She also urges people to always keep the number of poison control on hand—it could be a lifesaver.

Source: Yahoo, NY Daily News
Photos: Facebook, National Geographic, AZ Family

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