Mother spots bruise on daughter’s leg and thinks it’s harmless, but she’s wrong

The little girl's mom wants this story to serve as a reminder for parents to listen to their gut instinct if they feel something isn't right.


Kristine is a mother who knows that kids can be mischievous at times so it doesn’t come as a surprise for them to end up falling and getting bruises every now and then. 

When her 5-year-old daughter Kailyn got one on her knee, Kristine wasn’t really concerned. But, in the following couple of days, the bruise got bigger and the girl came down with fewer, and this mom knew things were more serious than they appeared so they took her to the emergency room. 

Weeks passed by, and the ‘harmless’ bruise wouldn’t heal. In fact, it looked nastier with each passing day. That was when the doctors informed Kristine and her husband Josh that the girl got bitten by the deadly black widow spider. 

“We never in a million years thought it would be a black widow spider,” Kristine, of Mendon, Massachusetts, told TODAY.

It all started when the girl first felt pain in her knee, but her mom thought it was because of her tight jeans. However, one night, as the girl was getting into her pajamas, Kristine noticed there was a bruise. 

“We never thought it was a bite or anything at the beginning,” she said. “There was no bite mark.”

Kailyn was given antibiotics that seemed not to have much effect so she had to return to the emergency room a couple of times. This raised the red flag. Something big was going on and no one knew what it was. 

“I had a feeling that the bite didn’t look right,” Kristine said. “It started to get really nasty.”


As the ‘innocent’ bruise wouldn’t heal, Kristine took her daughter to UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester, Massachusetts. There, doctors ran a bunch of tests that confirmed that Kailyn was bitten by the venomous black widow. 

“I didn’t think they were around here,” Kristine said. “I was pretty shocked.”

The doctor who admitted the girl, Dr. Durbin, said how there are only two or three cases a year of people who get these bites.

Unfortunately, this spider’s venom is so strong that it causes necrosis, a condition in which the skin dies. 

“That’s a very unusual and distinct reaction,” Dr. Durbin told TODAY. “I diagnosed her with a spider bite, presumably a black widow because that’s the only spider in New England that I know of that causes this kind of reaction.”

The poor girl was prescribed more antibiotics. But her condition now seemed to improve. 

“She was not severely ill,” Durbin said of Kailyn. “The bite looks nasty, but it wasn’t causing any serious illness in her.”

The parents believe that Kailyn was bitten on the day they were cleaning their yard as she recalls the children were running around the grass.

“We just want parents to trust your instincts,” she said. “If you feel something doesn’t look right, just keep going to the doctor to find out what it is.”

Luckily, these parents’ instinct didn’t fail them. As a result, things turned for the better and Kailyin is now healed completely.

You can take a look at the whole story in the video below.