DR M.A. ANSARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR M.A. ANSARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bee sting reaction. Female patient with multiple bee stings to her face and arms. Swelling of her lips and eyelids is particularly obvious. This oedema occurs when large amounts of fluid collects in the intercellular tissue spaces. Bee stings can cause pain, redness and swelling for up to 48 hours. Bee venom is recognised by the body as a foreign substance and triggers an inappropriately vigorous inflammatory response, mediated by body substances such as histamine. This kind of hypersensitive reaction is called an anaphylactic response, the commonest type of allergic reaction. Treatment is by removing the stings and using hydrocortisone cream.
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