Spider Bite

ExitCare ImageMost spider bites do not cause serious problems.


  • Do not scratch the bite.

  • Keep the bite clean and dry. Wash the bite with soap and water as told by your doctor.

  • Put ice on the bite.

  • Put ice in a plastic bag.

  • Place a towel between your skin and the bag.

  • Leave the ice on for 20 minutes. Do this 4 times a day for the first 2 to 3 days or as told by your doctor.

  • Raise (elevate) the bite above your heart.

  • Only take medicine as told by your doctor.

  • If you are given medicines (antibiotics), take them as told. Finish them even if you start to feel better.

You may need a tetanus shot if:

  • You cannot remember when you had your last tetanus shot.

  • You have never had a tetanus shot.

  • The bite broke your skin.

If you need a tetanus shot and you choose not to have one, you may get tetanus. Sickness from tetanus can be serious.


  • Your bite turns purple.

  • Your bite gets more puffy (swollen), painful, or red.

  • You are short of breath or have chest pain.

  • You have muscle cramps or painful muscle spasms.

  • You have belly (abdominal) pain.

  • You feel sick to your stomach (nauseous) or throw up (vomit).

  • You feel very tired or sleepy.

  • Your bite is not better after 3 days of treatment.


  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.