A 48-year-old member asked:
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my fire ant bites turned into boils! please help?

2 doctor answers
Dr. Ryan Phasouk
18 years experience Family Medicine
Boil: Boils are referred to as abscesses, in the medical community. They can occur from breaks in the skin, which provide a route of infection for bacteria to form an abscess (collection of pus/infection). When this happens, you may need to see a medical provider who may need to prescribe you antibiotics or incise and drain the abscess. Some home remedies may include a warm compress and ibuprofen.
Answered on Dec 10, 2013
Dr. Heidi Fowler
25 years experience Psychiatry
Pustules (vs boils): It is typical after a fire ant bite to develop a red welt which can become fairly large. Most often (not always) a pustule develops within a few hours to a day. These are very painful. My family & I have had them. Apply a 1 to 1 mix of baking soda & water. Tylenol (acetaminophen) or nsaid's for pain. Benadryl for itching. Call 911 for an allergic rxn. If these are boils you need medical care - i suspect.
Answered on Jun 14, 2017
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1 comment
Dr. Heidi Fowler
25 years experience Psychiatry
Provided original answer
they are the typical pustule that develop in response to solenopsin - (the alkaloid venom that the ant injects). Don't squeeze or pop them.
Jul 20, 2013

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A member asked:
Dr. James Ferguson
46 years experience Pediatrics
Keep clean/monitor: The fire ant bite is unusual in that the mouth parts contaminate the bite with an acid that tends to leave a sterile pustule.Although it can look bad ... Read More
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