Rare spider bites reported in the Pyrénées-Orientales

The ‘brown recluse’ spider - also known as the violinist spider - is the same size as a 20 centime coin (seen here with a US penny)

At least four people have been treated for necrosis after being bitten by a small spider in the Pyrénées-Orientales region.

The ‘brown recluse’ spider - also known as the violinist spider - is only the same size as a 20 centime coin, but can cause severe skin problems if it bites.

Reports suggest that at least four people have been treated at the clinic of Saint-Pierre de Perpignan after doctors diagnosed them with the spider bite.

The wounds become large, red, painful and inflamed, and can even sometimes present with a black ‘necrosis’ area in the centre of the bite. Victims may also develop a fever, according to Dr Anne Ricart, a doctor at the Saint-Pierre clinic, speaking to local newspaper France Bleu Roussillon.

It has not been confirmed for certain that the violinist spider is to blame, with one spider expert suggesting it could be a cousin of the species, as the creature has never been officially seen in France before.

However, similar cases were reported in 2015 in the Gard, the Herault and Aude regions, with some bites even requiring surgical intervention.

Doctors will usually treat bites by giving patients oxygen, in a bid to send high levels of oxygen to the areas affected by the necrosis.

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