Navigation Links
Tarantula Owners, Mind Your Eyes

Spider's hairy defense mechanism led to corneal injury in man, report says

THURSDAY, Dec. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Attention tarantula owners: Keep your face away from your eight-legged friend, and don't forget to wear eye protection.

That's the message from a new report about a man who appeared at a British hospital in February 2009 with tarantula hairs embedded in his cornea.

The 29-year-old man arrived at St. James University Hospital in Leeds, U.K., complaining that his eye had been bothering him for three weeks, describing it as red, watery and light sensitive.

According to the report published Dec. 31 in The Lancet, when drug treatment for the eye disease conjunctivitis failed to make him better, magnification of his eye showed spider hairs in his cornea. The patient then remembered that his Chilean Rose tarantula had released a "mist of hairs" into his eyes and face as he cleaned his pet's glass tank.

Doctors couldn't remove the hairs because they were too small, and instead had to give the man topical steroids, which dampened the immune system, to help reduce his symptoms. As of August 2009, the patient stated that he was better but still had some discomfort and occasional "floaters" in his vision.

"The Chilean Rose tarantula has urticating [stinging] hairs over the posterior aspect of its body. As a defense mechanism against potential predators, the tarantula will rub its hind legs against its abdomen to dislodge these hairs into the air. Multiple barbs allow the hairs to migrate through ocular tissue as well as other surfaces. The inflammatory reaction observed is termed ophthalmia nodosa; a broad diagnosis covering the response of the eye to insect or vegetable material," according to the report.

The authors suggest that "tarantula keepers be advised to routinely wear eye protection when handling these animals."

More information

The San Diego Zoo has quick facts about tarantulas.

-- Randy Dotinga

SOURCE: The Lancet, news release, Dec. 31, 2009

Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. AVMA Updates H1N1 Flu Resources for Pet Owners, Veterinarians
2. Fast-Growing National Health Company Has New Owners, Big Growth Plans
3. Pain Management For Your Pets, Key Information Every Pet Owner Should Know - Live Webcast to Pet Owners, March 13, 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (EDT) Via Morris Animal Foundation
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... Caicos Islands, BWI (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... Recently Caribbean Journal, one of the leading digital news sites highlighting Caribbean destinations, ... reason? The weather. While much of North America shivers under chilly grey skies ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 01, 2015 , ... Live Very Well is excited to ... on . The multi-carrier insurance exchange platform offers individual vision and ... to compare, quote and match plans to meet their needs. , Beginning ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... four states in the U.S. require dental technicians to be certified or obtain ... industry, NADL created the “What’s In Your Mouth?” campaign to inform dentists that ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... The world of hair transplants and restoration ... extraction. These techniques and procedures have been in use for many years and are ... Dr. Parsa Mohebi, M.D. has utilized many of these methods over the years, he ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... 30, 2015 , ... During the week of Thanksgiving, the ... for its research, education, support, and advocacy efforts. The campaign is held every ... Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, which also goes by Meso Foundation, holds the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... 30, 2015  QT Vascular Ltd., together with its ... its subsidiaries, TriReme Medical LLC and Quattro Vascular Pte. ... the design, assembly and distribution of advanced therapeutic solutions ... pleased to announce that a three-judge panel of ... for the Federal Circuit ("Federal Circuit") has unanimously granted ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... 30, 2015   Royal Philips  (NYSE: ... of Radiology Solutions, a fully integrated, consultative approach ... customized, data-driven practice management approaches that combine imaging ... practices improve care delivery and reduce costs. Making ... of North America Annual Meeting (RSNA) in ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Nautilus Medical Inc. today announced worldwide availability of MatrixRay, ... The release of MatrixRay to the entire medical healthcare ... America) in Chicago - the ... --> --> MatrixRay is the first ... worldwide via a peer-to-peer exchange network of physicians and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: