Photo courtesy of David O'Connor
The black widow spider produces a protein venom that affects the victim'snervous system. Some people are slightly affected by the venom, but others mayhave a severe response. The first symptom is acute pain at the site of the bitethough there may only be a minimal local reaction.
The local pain may be followed by localized or generalized severe musclecramps, abdominal pain, weakness, and tremor. In severe cases, nausea,vomiting, faintness, dizziness, chest pain, and respiratory difficulties mayfollow.
The severity of the reaction can depend on the age and physical condition ofthe person bitten. Children and the elderly are more seriously affected thanyoung adults. Read moreabout the symptoms and treatments for black widow spider bites.