Western medicine uses a variety of techniques to treat spider bites, and it’s becoming increasingly popular in the US.
Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco and the University in Adelaide in Australia have conducted the largest clinical trial to date of Western medicine for spider bites.
In a study published on the journal Arachnology, the researchers report that a combination of two Western spiderworts (Sclerosporium fumigatus and Spirocybia sclerosum) helped treat a variety, but not all, of the common spider bites they examined.
“We were surprised by the effectiveness of the two Western spidersworts,” said Dr. Brian J. Ries of UC San Francisco’s department of dermatology, one of the study’s lead authors.
“We thought that if you have a spider bite, you might be better off treating it with a venom vaccine.”
“But we found that the two western spiderswort treatments really helped.”
Ries said that the Western spiders are actually a member of a family of species called the “tumor-specific family” of spiders, because they have very similar spiny bodies that can form into tumors.
They are considered a “cancer-resistance” species because they are so common in spiders, but also because they often have some anti-cancer properties, such as blocking an enzyme called tumor necrosis factor-α.
The researchers said they were particularly surprised that the treatments worked so well, because it’s not uncommon for people to have spider bites when using common household tools.
“You’re using a tool that’s been used for thousands of years,” Ries said.
“So it’s kind of like if you’re putting the handle of a screwdriver on a carabiner, that’s a lot like putting a spider on the handle.
So it’s just a bit weird.”
The study involved nearly 1,000 participants who were randomly assigned to one of two treatments: one that involved one Western spider wort, and one that included both.
The researchers then looked at the effects on spider bite rates, as well as on the participants’ symptoms of spider bites in the weeks leading up to and after the trial.
To their surprise, the two treatments did a very good job of treating both spider bite and spider-related symptoms in both groups.
“What’s interesting is that the treatment is not just killing the spider, but it actually is killing a lot of the spiders that are in the environment,” Ried said.
This finding could be due to a number of factors, including the presence of certain types of bacteria, he added.
For example, the Western spider extracts are more effective at killing the bacteria that cause Lyme disease, a bacterial infection that can cause chronic joint pain and inflammation in people who have had previous Lyme disease.
Another factor that may play a role is that Western spiders produce toxins that are not very efficient at killing bacteria, and that may have contributed to the efficacy of the treatment.
Both the Western and the Spiro are known for being anti-inflammatory and antifungal, and the Western is also known to be a good inhibitor of the bacteria Candida albicans.
The Western spiders also contain a compound called carboxy-C-glycosaminoglycan (CCG), which is known to help reduce swelling in wounds.
In the study, the participants were given either one or two doses of the Westerns, and then had their skin removed from the affected area.
Two weeks later, the investigators took blood samples for analysis of the patients’ inflammatory markers.
Researchers found that both the Western wort and the spiderswont be able to eliminate all the COG-producing bacteria that caused the spider bites that led up to the trial, so they decided to stop using the spiders to administer the treatment to the participants and instead use a “safer” method, which involves placing the spiders in a plastic bag with a small amount of cotton in it, and using a cotton swab to collect the spiders.
They also used a “nose swab” method to collect saliva and urine, and a “puncture swab,” which involves inserting a needle into the site of the spider bite.
These were the two different treatments that the researchers used, and both worked as well in their intended target group.
The study was published in the journal PLoS ONE.
It’s the first study to look at the efficacy and safety of Western spider treatments in humans.
The team will continue to monitor the efficacy in human volunteers.