Man Left With Hole In His Bum Cheek After Being Bitten By A Spider On His Engagement Night
Warning: graphic images.
A newly engaged man was left with a hole in his bum cheek after being bitten by a spider on his engagement night.
Jérémy Schalkwijk’s engagement night will be one he’ll never forget – but not for all the right reasons, after he was left with a 5cm-wide scar on his bum thanks to a violin spider bite.
The 33-year-old had popped the question during a romantic after-dinner sunset stroll through the bush near Kruger National Park, South Africa, with his now fiancée Athina, 27, in June.
After a romantic evening, the loved-up couple headed off to bed, but as soon as they pulled up the covers Jérémy felt a sudden pain on his right bum cheek, which he initially believed to be a wasp sting.
As three more days passed and the newly-engaged couple broke the news to their families, Jérémy was unable to sit as the bite seeped pus and turned black with infection.
Examining the injury closer, he soon realised it was not a wasp sting but a bite – from a venomous violin spider that had crept in next to him and his fiancée.
Rushing to hospital, Jérémy was met by medics who cut away the flesh and mechanically sucked out the infection – leaving him with a gaping 5cm hole in his bum.
And after being left with a scar to mark the most important night of his life – which also happened to be when they conceived their first baby – Jérémy and Athina joked the wound looked just like an engagement ring.
Jérémy, from Barberton, South Africa, said:
I’ll have the scar forever – there’s no doubt about it. It’ll be a nice story to tell on our wedding day.
I joked with Athina that the scar left behind looks like an engagement ring. It’s healed but there’s a big circle there now.
The bite was like burning under the skin. The pain was initially like a bee sting, then a wasp sting and finally, a scorpion sting.
It was on my bum and I couldn’t put any weight on that side. [After four days] I couldn’t move anymore, so that’s when I decided to go to the hospital.
By then I knew it was actually a violin spider bite.
Athina’s family called me Tarzan because I’m always barefoot and love the bush, but now I realise I should have taken this more seriously.
They laughed when I told them the story of the bite because they already called me Tarzan. Now they are scared that she will give birth to a spider boy.
Jérémy had whisked Athina away to pop the question six months into their whirlwind relationship after meeting her on Tinder, and thought the bush was the perfect place having worked there for three years.
As I’m a guide and I love the bush, I thought it would be a good idea to do the proposal there.
I knew it would be a memorable night, but I didn’t know I’d be left scarred after it.
We spent the day in the Kruger then after the meal on the way back to the lodge, I asked her if she wanted to marry me when there was a sunset.
I hired a nice room in a nice lodge, but it seems somewhere in there there was a violin spider that decided to bite me. It took me two days to realise there was something wrong [with the wound].
I’d had African tick-bite fever before and it goes right along the bite. It was very similar and I didn’t stress too much, but said if it got worse I’d get some antibiotics and it’d be sorted.
By day four, it then turned very nasty and didn’t get better.
I went to the clinic which was the closest and they said I should have gone earlier, there was a bit of infection and they told me to take some antibiotics and painkillers.
Then it got worse and worse. I went to a private hospital and they had to cut the whole infection out in theatre.
After five weeks using the wound VAC machine, Jeremy then underwent further surgery to have a skin graft. Surgeons took a large square of skin from his thigh then transferred it to his bum-cheek.
It took a long, long time to heal. I had a negative-pressure machine [wound VAC] which helped.
At the beginning it was draining all the pus in the wound, then it helped the healing.
After five-and-a-half weeks with that machine, they decided to do a skin graft.
They took some skin out of my thigh and put it back on my bum. It took five days at the clinic and two weeks at home resting and without showering.
Luckily Athina said yes when I proposed and she’s going to give birth in nine weeks, exactly nine months after that night.
Well, it certainly is a story to tell the grandchildren.
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