Doctors find brown recluse spider inside woman's ear

Susie Torres visited her Kansas City doctor for what she believed was “water in her ear”. It’s a familiar feeling for most – an uncomfortable pressure and slight tickle when water trapped inside the ear canal moves and sloshes about. In Torre’s case however, the final diagnosis was the stuff of nightmares.

Brown recluse spider found inside woman's earA medical assistant examined Torres’ ear using a traditional otoscope, a magnification tool used to peer deep inside the ear canal. Torres says the assistant looked alarmed and said, “I’m going to get a couple more people” before running from the room. As she left the room, the assistant told her: “I think you have an insect in there.”

Torres says she did not panic even though she was left not knowing exactly what was inside her ear. A doctor returned and removed the foreign object. Indeed, it was more than a common insect – it was a spider. More horrifying, the spider was found to be a highly venomous brown recluse spider whose bite can cause devastating necrotic death of swaths of surrounding tissue.

Doctors say Torres was lucky – the spider was simply nesting inside her ear and did not bite her so there was no subsequent physical damage. Psychological damage however… Torres told local reporters:

“I put some cotton balls in my ear last night because I did not have any ear plugs. I’m pretty terrified of spiders.”

Brown recluse spider found inside woman's ear


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