Wasp sting - you should expect these long-term consequences
Long-term consequences are understood as the delayed appearance of symptoms in relation to the actual disease event, in this case the wasp sting. They usually appear no earlier than two to three days after the wasp sting and are therefore no longer part of the acute course of the disease.
Overall, the long-term effects of a wasp sting are rather rare and almost only occur in allergy sufferers. They can express themselves in the form of flu-like symptoms, circulatory problems or even permanent sensitization.
So if you are not an allergy sufferer, there is a very high probability that you will not have to fear any long-term effects.
The most common long-term effects
The following symptoms are the most common in allergy sufferers:
- flu-like illness with fever due to overreaction of the immune system,
- Heart and circulatory problems due to widening of the blood vessels in a severe allergy,
- permanent sensitization (= development of a manifest allergy after the first bite),
- chronic pain associated with delayed or complicated wound healing,
- Blistering and
- Scarring at the puncture site when a wasp sting healed if there was blistering.
Rare late effects
The following symptoms tend to occur less often, but are in principle possible:
Under "sepsis"One understands blood poisoning. It is a life-threatening illness that requires intensive medical care in the hospital. In wasp stings, however, the full picture of sepsis is relatively rare, as an infection is only transmitted by a wasp sting in a few cases .
Symptoms of sepsis are similar to those of anaphylactic shock, however, in contrast to shock, medical diagnostics do show an impairment of various organ functions.
Find out more about the topic: Lymphangitis after an insect bite
Edema can be both an acute consequence of a wasp sting and a long-term consequence. They often manifest themselves in the area around the mosquito bite within minutes to hours and regress within days with normal healing.
A prolonged existence of edema indicates persistence of the allergen in the puncture area, for example if the sting is not completely removed or an excessive immune reaction in the context of an allergy.
If the swelling persists, a doctor should assess whether the lymphatic system is also affected. If this is the case, manual lymph drainage is recommended to prevent further damage.
In principle, itching is not a direct long-term consequence of a wasp sting, as it only occurs when the body's immune system reacts to the wasp sting. As a rule, the immune system reacts immediately to the mosquito bite and special defense cells release the messenger substance histamine out. This irritates sensitive nerve endings in the skin, which those affected perceive as itching.
The more wasp venom was injected with the sting, the more immune cells recognize the venom as "foreign" and release the histamine. Conversely, this means that as long as wasp venom is still in the skin, itching can be a possible symptom. The fact that it increases over time is often due to the psychogenic fixation on the mosquito bite and the manipulation of the mosquito bite itself by scratching.
How many wasp stings are fatal?
First of all, it must be said that it is extremely unlikely that you will actually die from a wasp sting. If at all, one is much more likely to die from the anaphylactic shock that occurs immediately after the sting than from the long-term effects of the sting. The only long-term consequence that can lead to death without treatment is sepsis.
In addition, every person reacts individually to wasp stings, so it is not possible to answer this question exactly. In general, the following dimensions apply to healthy people without allergies:
- In adults it becomes dangerous from about 100 stings,
- for children from 50.
In the case of an allergy sufferer, on the other hand, just one prick is enough to die of the consequences of anaphylactic shock without immediate medical treatment.