Big bug bites don't necessarily mean you're allergic - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Big bug bites don't necessarily mean you're allergic


Dr. Christopher Tumpkin has had call, after call, as the amount of people dealing with mosquito bites this summer has skyrocketed.

"I would say we've seen 20 to 25 percent more calls so far," said Tumpkin.

The drastic increase is because of Skeeter Syndrome, A non-allergic, but hyper-sensitive reaction to a mosquito bite, which is more prevalent this year because of this season's record amount of rain.

"During this time of year, parents get concerned usually about their kids having reactions to mosquito bites and sometimes they occur in areas around their eye, face and around their mouth," said Tumpkin.

However, Tumpkin says parents and kids shouldn't rush to the doctor. "Skeeter Syndrome is not a life threatening problem. It's a little inconvenient and it can be a little uncomfortable, but it's not dangerous," he added.

Skeeter syndrome usually peaks between 12 to 48 hours after the first bite. If the symptoms are just where the bite is, even if it's large, Tumpkin says it doesn't require an allergist evaluation.

"Allergist see people who have systemic reactions, which would be breathing and problems with blood pressure. In other words, symptoms that would be outside and away from where the actual bite is," said Tumpkin.

Testing for a mosquito allergy is not usually recommended, since there really isn't a cure for it and often times it's not covered by insurance.

Yet, Tumpkin does advise patients to see a doctor if they encounter a fever, chills or a larger rash after 48 hours.


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