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Bug Bite Identification
trekwiz posted:
Almost three weeks ago, as we returned to NJ from our road trip to Florida, my boyfriend noticed a large number of bug bites on his right calf--they were red and itchy, and seemed to cover almost the whole surface area of his calf! We didn't see any bugs, so we weren't sure what they were; we called the last hotel we stayed at to do a bed bug check, and the room we stayed in was determined not to have any.

His bites were healed by mid-week last week. ...unfortunately, as of Friday, I woke up with mystery bites, and again on Saturday and Sunday--since Monday I started going to bed as close to sunrise as possible and have no new bites that I can see.

Mine were not nearly as numerous as my boyfriend's were, but they were also itchy, and look similar to his--like very small mosquito bites, no bigger than the tip of a pen. Here are two pictures, with a penny for size comparison: and

I have a small square cluster of 5 bites on my right calf (seen in the first picture), a straight line of two bites on my left leg on the inside just above the calf (as in the second picture), and I have a few around my chest, in a curved line around my right nipple. I've noticed red bumps in the mirror on my sides and back, but I haven't been able to determine if those are bug bites or acne.

Today I had an exterminator come in to do a bed bug check, and he said he thought it was unlikely that these are bed bug bites. He said that the bites were far too small for any bed bug bites he's seen; he also did not see any bugs in his examination of my room, nor did he find fecal or blood trails in my bed/on the sheets/on the floor. I also did not see any bugs in any of this time, either.

Additionally, when my boyfriend told me about his bites, I threw all of the clothes I brought on the trip into the wash, and left them in the dryer for longer than usual.

A co-worker suggested fleas, but I checked out the bug bite slideshow here on WebMD ( ) and my bites don't look even remotely similar to that.

Any ideas? I want to get rid of whatever's biting me...
JohnNYC82 responded:
I don't know the answer to your problem, but no fecal or blood trails is a good sign. We just confirmed beg bugs in our apartment a month ago, and that's what tipped us off as my roommate and I did not have any noticible bites.

However, I do have a question about bites. I didn't think I had any, but I have grown suspicious over small red dots I've seen on me from time to time. For the most part, they would be on my face. They would look like little red blood circular marks, kind of like if someone stuck me with a pin. There would usually be no notible tear in the skin, but once or twice they did appear slightly scabbed over. My dermatologist saw a picture of them and reported them as blood vessel burts brought on from alcohol. But I have now seen a similar looking mark on my finger, and I'm getting concerned that I was mis-diagnosed and that it is actually very small bed bug bites. Is that possible??

Can anyone help?? Feel like I'm loosing my mind!
Susan Evans, MD responded:
One thing to try, if you suspect that there is something in your mattress is to purchase an allergy cover for your mattress. This will prevent anything that may be in your mattress from being able to emerge at night.

As you mentioned, washing and drying your bedclothes on a sanitary cycle and high heat is an excellent approach as well. Do not forget to do the same for any clothing, sleepwear, etc. Carpets in your sleeping area need to be well cleaned as well.

I hope you discover the cause of your bites.


Dr. Evans
trekwiz replied to Susan Evans, MD's response:
Thanks. Got a mattress cover, washed everything, and vacuumed but I'm still being bit. ): I have a dermatologist appointment for Tuesday to identify the problem.

trekwiz replied to trekwiz's response:
Following up with the actual diagnosis...what a weird one! Apparently it wasn't bug bites, it was hot tub folliculitis. What a relief!
Susan Evans, MD replied to trekwiz's response:
Dear trekwiz,

Thank you for your followup diagnosis. Hot tub folliculitis is more common than one would imagine. Monitoring the chemicals in a hot tub is vital, as the particular bacteria that thrive in hot environments can result in a very nasty rash.

Hopefully you can heal quickly and make sure the water in the hot tub is carefully maintained in the future.


Dr. Evans
ferero replied to Susan Evans, MD's response:
One woman stated she had very hard days acquiring Diatomaceous Earth, which is generally known as Silicone Dioxide and even found that ChemFree Bug Killer would be the similar point, cheap as well as available at pretty much any market.

You may apply a wide selection of 3 or more portions massaging alcohol together with two portions normal water at the Bed Bug Bites to take care of those you come across. That would not perform substantially for any parasites that keep on being invisible, nonetheless it will probably remove those that you sprinkle.

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