MONDAY, NOV. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Think twice before hauling used furniture into your home because it may be infested with bedbugs, warns a Loyola University Health System allergist.
Just because you can't see them doesn't mean they're not there.
"A family came in covered in bedbug bites from infested 'free' furniture they found in an abandoned apartment," Dr. Joseph Leija said in a Loyola news release. "The couple had only taken the wooden headboards and baseboards of the beds -- not the mattresses because they knew that would be unsanitary -- as well as a table and chairs. The bugs were found in the tiny crevices."
Other patients have brought home bedbugs in clothing bought at neighborhood garage sales and resale stores.
"Bedbugs are insidious survivors who travel well -- they hide in cracks in wood and in the weave of cloth. They are vampires -- they are dormant during the day but come out at night and feed on human blood," Leija said.
Bedbug bites can cause a skin rash or even large weeping blisters due to allergic reactions.
Leija offered the following advice for protecting yourself from bedbugs:
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has more about bedbugs.
-- Robert Preidt
SOURCE: Loyola University Health System, news release, Nov. 18, 2010
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