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Weird Eye Injury

January 27, 2010 - Rodney Smith
For those of you who like bizarre medical diseases or injuries you might find this Lancet report interesting.

A 29-year old British man presented for vision care because of red, watery eye. The red, watery eye did not respond to antibiotics so he was referred to St. James's University Hospital in Leeds, England. It turns out the man had about a dozen hairs from his tarantula stuck in his eye.

Evidently, in an effort to ward off predators, this type of spider will rub its hind legs against its abdomen to dislodge hairs into the air. And these hairs have multiple barbs that help them puncture soft tissue of predators. And, sure enough, after a little probing of his memory, the man recalled that his spider had blasted him with a "mist of hairs

Since the hairs were too small to be removed, the eye was treated with topical steroids. And it is hoped that the hairs will eventually break down and disappear.


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