I was terrified when my baby was bitten by a false widow spider – but the fang marks uncovered a devastating truth | The Sun

A MUM has revealed how a false widow spider bite may have saved her baby's life.

Kourtney Haynes, 25, faced every parent's worst nightmare when she discovered the UK's most dangerous spider had crawled into six-month-old Bentley's crib and bit him as he slept last month.

The Essex mum said: "I went to bathe the baby and saw bloody discharge on his vest and when I stripped him and saw a green/brown bruise on the outside of his nipple."

That night, the little one failed to eat his dinner or fall asleep as his temperature soared.

Kourtney decided to take her tiny tot to Colchester Hospital where medics identified it as a false widow spider bite and worked together to "drain the poison" out of Bentley's body.

Although false widows do have a venomous bite, the venom is not potent or dangerous.

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Usually, the only symptom is pain in the place you were bitten for 1-12 hours, rarely for more than 24 hours.

"It must've happened during the night because I bathed him the night before and didn't notice anything," she said.

Tests also revealed a hard mass the "size of a golf ball" growing where the bite was, just under Bentley's left nipple.

Luckily, further scans revealed the mass on Bentley's chest was non-cancerous – but Kourtney fears the growth could have become sinister if it wasn't caught early.

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"It could've turned cancerous, especially if the infection goes inside of it – so medics were glad they spotted it," she said.

Kourtney, who is also mum to eight-year-old Alfie, said the spider potentially saved her son's life – but said her tiny tot isn't out of the woods yet. 

"He's got an infection which has now spread to his blood," she explained.

"They've given him stronger antibiotics and if it's not cured, they'll have to take him into hospital until the infection has gone," she added.

And days after coming home from hospital, Bentley has shown signs of paralysis on the upper left side of his body, which Kourtney believes is related to the venomous spider bite.

She said: "He can hardly pick up toys with his left arm, he can't roll or lay on that side.

"They don't know what it is – it could be the spider bite has caused an abscess which is putting pressure on the left side of his body or it could be related to the lump or it could be the infection."

Medics told Kourtney her son is at high risk of developing sepsis due to the spider bite – and the little one is having his nipple drained on a daily basis to reduce risk of infection.

She said: "I'm an emotional wreck at the moment – I'm exhausted. The spider bite has kind of risked his life but at the same time saved it."

What does a false widow spider bite look like & are they dangerous?

A spider bite will usually leave you with small puncture marks on the skin, which can be painful and cause redness and swelling, NHS guidance states.

According to falsewidowspider.org.uk, you won't usually realise you've been nipped by a false widow until afterwards when you start to feel some pain radiating from the site.

It ordinarily lasts between one and 12 hours, and rarely for more than 24 hours, according to the Natural History Museum.

Often, the symptoms are no worse than the pain of a wasp sting, it added.

It's been described as a stinging, burning feeling. You might also notice some swelling and numbness on the site.

Symptoms of false widow bites tend to be no worse than the pain of a wasp sting.

But in rare cases, some people have come down with horror injuries after reacting badly to being nipped.

 the Natural History Museum notes that reports of sinister symptoms like rotting flesh and excruciating pain are usually not backed up with formal spider identification.

It added that any extreme side effects experienced are most likely the result of a secondary infection – most likely a bacterial one – if the wound is not kept clean.

The Natural History Museum also noted that false widows only bite when they feel threatened or they get trapped against your skin.

According to falsewidowspider.org.uk, the bite of a false widow spider will not cause your flesh to rot and they will certainly not kill you.

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