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Newtownabbey mum 'unable to walk for weeks' after a spider bit her in bed

By Laura Abernethy

Published 27/08/2016

Kelly Waring, with her husband Neill and two children Olivia (4) and Ryan (18 months)
Kelly Waring, with her husband Neill and two children Olivia (4) and Ryan (18 months)

A Newtownabbey woman has said she suffered 'excruciating pain' and has been unable to walk for three weeks after she was bitten by a spider in bed.

Three weeks ago, Kelly Waring (39) was spending the night at her caravan in Ballywalter. When she woke up, she said her foot felt itchy and painful.

A spider bit the bottom of Kelly's foot and it became infected
A spider bit the bottom of Kelly's foot and it became infected
The bite left a red mark and her foot was swollen
The scar left on Kelly's foot

Later that day, she looked at her foot and noticed a red sore on the bottom. She said it became so painful that she wasn’t able to walk on it and her husband Neill took her straight to her GP in Glengormley the next day.

She said: “That night when I was going to bed, I thought my foot was really really sore and I realised it wasn’t just a scratch. The next morning I couldn’t put it on the floor and it was swollen. It was really bad.”

The mum-of-two said she was shocked when her doctor told her that she had been bitten by a spider.

“She examined my foot under a magnifying glass and she said she could tell it was a spider because there were two prongs. I was so shocked, I didn’t even ask what type of spider it was or anything.

“You hear about people getting bitten by spiders in Australia but not in Northern Ireland”, she said.

After her doctor prescribed antibiotics and strong painkillers, Kelly went home to rest but the bite continued to get more painful and was red and swollen.

On Sunday, she said she couldn’t stick the pain any longer and her husband took her to the Accident and Emergency department at the Mater Hospital.

“I felt like it was getting worse. I couldn’t stand on my foot almost a week later. My skin reacted so badly because of the infection”, she explained.

A spider caught by Cathy Cole
A spider caught by Cathy Cole
Suzanne in Bangor spotted this creature
Danielle Tweed saw this spider on the front door of her house in Bangor
Hannah Robinson spotted this creature in Newtownabbey
Aidan Quinn captured this spider
Aidan Quinn captured this spider
Jamie Cordy found this creature in his living room
Paula Billington caught this spider in a glass
Roberta Montgomery captured this spider in her bathroom in Garvagh
Dee Kenny in Kells found this spider in a sink
A spider found by Harti Marron
Paula Pennie found this spider in Ballymena
Paula Pennie found this spider in Ballymena
Ruth Jordan captured this spider
Joanne Henderson found these two bugs in Lisburn
Liam Killen caught this eight-legged creature
David Hefferon found this spider in his kitchen
David Hefferon found this spider in his kitchen
A spider found by James Cunningham
Teresa Gill found this spider in her garden
Carla Macklin came across this bug in Antrim
Carla Macklin came across this bug in Antrim
A spider found by Joanne Parker, from Glengormley
Lee Adams found this spider
Julia Evans found a spider the size of a tennis ball
A spider found by Kyla Brown
Elsa McCready in Bangor spotted this spider
A spider spotted by Sharon McCallion in Castlederg
Martine Delaney in Belfast found this spider
Martine Delaney in Belfast found this spider
A big found by Tracy Stopford in a caravan in Castlerock
Thomas Kidd found this creature in north Belfast
Denise Fowler came across this spider in east Belfast
A spider found by Caol McHugh
Spiders found by Pauline Trusdale in Bangor
Spiders found by Pauline Trusdale in Bangor
Andrew Magowan found this spider at his work in Belfast
Andrew Magowan found this spider at his work
Alison Moorhead found these creatures at her home in Tandragee
Alison Moorhead found these creatures at her home in Tandragee

Although staff they wanted to admit her so she could receive IV antibiotics, Kelly was worried about leaving her two young children at home so they agreed to send her home with stronger antibiotics and crutches.

Three weeks on, Kelly said she is only starting to get back to normal. The bite has started to heal and she is getting back on her feet.

“It’s left a scar on my foot and I’m still taking the antibiotics but I am starting to weight bear on it.

“It’s been tough looking after my kids and trying to get around. My family have been a great help helping out with them but it’s been a tough few weeks.”

Kelly said she is now terrified of spiders, particularly around four-year-old Olivia and 18-month-old Ryan.

“It was really frightening,” she said, “I was never scared of them before. I would have gone and put them out of the room for others before but I’ve been back at the caravan for the first time this week. I’ve been checking the ceilings and the floors and everywhere because I’m so worried now.

“I don’t want to feel pain like that again. I’ve had two kids and that pain was worse. The only thing I’m glad of is that it happened to me and not the children. I want to warn people about what could happen and to be careful.”

With Autumn on the way, giant spiders are invading homes across Northern Ireland.

The end of August usually sees a huge increase in large house spiders as they start to look for a place to live over winter, and as it is mating season, male spiders are also on the hunt for females.

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