Multiple bites/welts over grandmother's body (~75 yrs). What could it be?

Patient

Q: My grandmother (~75 yrs) suddenly has a lot of red bites/welts all over her body: arms, neck, back, stomach, etc. What could this be?

Symptoms:  The bites/welts are red and look like insect bites. They are approximately half an inch or a little over 1 cm in diameter.
Images: 
Multiple bites/welts over g...-1 Multiple bites/welts over g...-2 Multiple bites/welts over g...-3
Doctor

A:   Thank you for your question. These swellings look like an inflammatory response to being bitten by an insect such as fleas or bed bugs. These insects in particular can infest the bedding in which your grandmother sleeps in resulting in this bites. We recommend that you apply some topical anti-itch cream containing hydrocortisone to treat the itching and inflammation. Furthermore, we recommend that you thoroughly wash her bed linens, pillows and comforters in hot water and dry them on the highest setting on your dryer to kill any fleas or bed bugs. You can also add a powder containing diatomaceous earth to the mattress and around the bed at the corners to prevent the recurrence of bed bugs in the future.

Thank you for choosing Askthedoctor.com

Related Q&A

Q: I really want a cat but suffer with allergies. Is there any way I can live with one and control the allergy

Q: Hi I wanted to see if my symptoms might be caused by a food sensitivity. I have a dry itchy flaky scrap, itchy skin ...

Q: Hello doctor I'm living in a very seasonal allergic pollotion city. Last month, I started getting there infections...

Q: I have been scheduled for a drug allergy challenge involving acetaminophen. The center will not have a physician in ...

Q: Hi There, I am an alcoholic. I have been drinking for years heavily (vodka) and then switched to wine to try to tamp...

 
DOCTOR ADVISORY BOARD
218

Dr. James Obaji M.D.

  • 247 Reviews
  • Family Physician
173

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

  • 190 Reviews
  • Family Physician
138

Dr. Pat Golden M.D.

  • 169 Reviews
  • Cardiologist
98

Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.

  • 112 Reviews
  • Plastic Surgeon
CNN
BBC
MSNBC
CBS
abcNews
FoxNews