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Was stung, area is red, hot, itchy, and slightly hardened, no swelling. Normal?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2001
Answered : 11917 Questions
Good morning,
I was stung by a yellow jacket on Wednesday and it took me about 30 minutes to get the stinger out. My sister is positive she got the stinger about but again, it was in my leg for a bit.

I am not allergic to bees since I have been stung before but do have many allergies so I was taking an antihistamine when I got stung.

Since Wednesday night the area has is red, hot, itchy, and slightly hardened about three inches around the sting - no swelling. I am not sure if this is a natural progression. I attached a picture of my leg which I just took.
Posted Wed, 4 Sep 2013 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Michelle Gibson James 48 minutes later
Brief Answer:
may be infected

Detailed Answer:
HI, thanks for using healthcare magic

An allergic response can result in the redness, increased heat and the itching.The hardness is also part of the inflammatory response which can occur in an allergy or an infection.

Since it occurred 24 hours ago and you were using ant histamine, if it were an allergy, it would have been expected to be diminishing by now, it may not be completely resolved but should be improving.

It is possible that the manipulation necessary to remove the stinger introduced some infection into the skin.

If there is no improvement by 24 to 36 hours after the injury, you may want to consider visiting your doctor .
He or she would be able to determine if antibiotics are necessary.

I hope this helps, feel free to ask any additional questions
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