Not a good day (Im suddenly allergic)

Was doing a full inspection on some of my hives today. Must have squashed a bee between my wrist and the edge of the box when lifting a second brood box back into place. Copped a sting through the wrist mesh on the glove just where the sleeve of my bee suit ends.
No worries, I dont get stung a lot maybe a couple of times a year and have never had any sort of reaction other than minor swelling like a mosquito bite so I finished putting the hive back together and walked over to the ute. Removed my gloves and stinger, had a drink and a rest for a few minutes. Started to feel a bit dizzy and then very dizzy, so started driving back to parents house about 1.5km away. After a few hundred metres I thought I might faint, sweeting and very faint so I called mum and said better come down. Meet her half way and I drove the rest of the way to the house removed my bee suit and had a cool drink and a sit down. Within minutes I was very itchy and developing welts. Drove the 5 minutes to the local hospital, by then I was red and had welts from my neck to upper calves. Took a few pills and the nurses observed me for about half hour before I went to see the Doc. Still itchy red and covered in welts, feeling a bit faint, nauseous and minor stomach cramps. Doc gave me a few more pills and a shot and kept me under observation for another 2 hours. Welts had improved slightly but still all the symptoms and vomiting so he sent me back to the nurses to observe. Another needle for the nausea some more pills, ECG blood pressure and temp every 30min for another 3 hours and the symptoms had finally abated enough to go home.

At this stage I dont know where this will leave me with bee keeping. Doc wants to see me tomorrow and run a few test I guess the results might give me a bit more idea of where I stand.

Sorry to hear this @220.

One of my early mentors had to give up beekeeping after developing similar reactions to stings after many years.

I have been the opposite, with my reaction reducing in severity over time.

Hopefully the tests tomorrow give you the answers you want. :ambulance:

You can see how red I have gone in this picture, I am hoping the fact I didnt have any swelling or breathing difficulties is a positive

Holy hell, wasn’t expecting that! :hushed:

I certainly wasn’t expecting it.

Wow, that’s an impressive reaction!!

I’m recently allergic but so far only bad localised swelling - stories like yours make me realise how much I need to keep an eye on this though! I invested in a nice pair of soft leather beekeeper/welder gloves because if I get stung on my hands I can’t work, drive (or feed myself) for a few days. They’re cumbersome, but well worth it, and I haven’t been stung since, Mind you, between the gloves, gumboots, and full suit, I look like I’m ready for a war every time I check the bees.

Hello Team,

Wow! What a reminder of how the hobby can just end. Hope the potions work. I picked up a few stings on the weekend. All my fault, white wellies in the boot of the car.

Best wishes,


Don’t know if it is good or bad news but my blood test came back as negative for bee venom allergy.
Good in that I am not allergic but leaves a big question over the reaction I had last week. Doc isnt overly concerned about me continuing with bees. He has prescribed prednisolone tablets to be taken if I start to have any sort of reaction to a sting and instructions to get straight to hospital.
I am lucky in that the my bee sites on my parents and brothers farms are both within about 3.5km of the local hospital.
At this stage I am going to continue beekeeping and see what happens, the only change will be that I will make sure I have someone tag along whenever I am working them.

Read this a couple of months ago and then again recently. Thought I might add a comment. Couple of possibilities. It is possible that you can get an allergic reaction dependent on what has recently challenged your immune system aka. the recently discover allergy to red meat due to previous tick bite. Then there was an issue we had in the 50’s when a few of us were running the beekeeping demonstration cage at the Sydney Royal Show. One of our more experienced ( and more stung members) was stung and just dropped like a brick. It seems he had been bitten on a nerve end.
That said if you do have a continuing issue you might consider de-sensitisation. My friend, and lab technician, Terry, had extreme allergic reaction to bee stings. Over a couple of months he went over the desensitisation process, which I gather involves challenging the body with gradually more concentrated applications. He reports that he now appears to have no problems having been stung a couple of times since the treatment.