29 doctors weighed in:

Should I be worried that a yellow jacket sting, one week later, is still red, swollen and very itchy?

29 doctors weighed in
Dr. Steven Machtinger
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
15 doctors agree

In brief: Is it infected?

Yellow jackets scrounge garbage cans & picnic tables - there's always a worry that their stingers might be contaminated with germs.
Considering the number of yellow jacket stings & the few that become infected it's probably not that big a concern. Infections usually hurt rather than itch. Stings will be red & swollen regardless of infection. If you're not sure have a physician take a look.

In brief: Is it infected?

Yellow jackets scrounge garbage cans & picnic tables - there's always a worry that their stingers might be contaminated with germs.
Considering the number of yellow jacket stings & the few that become infected it's probably not that big a concern. Infections usually hurt rather than itch. Stings will be red & swollen regardless of infection. If you're not sure have a physician take a look.
Dr. Steven Machtinger
Dr. Steven Machtinger
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3 comments
Dr. Janet Greenhut
It sounds like a delayed local allergic reaction, especially if it started swelling more than 24 hours after the sting. Ask your doctor if taking antihistamines will help.
Dr. Maziar Rezvani
Agree with the delayed process. If your symptoms are severe it would benefit from a physical exam and possibly systemic steroids.
Dr. Maziar Rezvani
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
9 doctors agree

In brief: See Doctor

Although local reactions, which are initially ige-mediated, will naturally involve activated inflammatory cells later, and can last for several days, you should have a health-care professional take a look.
Tthere could be other factors contributing to your reaction and why it still has not resolved.

In brief: See Doctor

Although local reactions, which are initially ige-mediated, will naturally involve activated inflammatory cells later, and can last for several days, you should have a health-care professional take a look.
Tthere could be other factors contributing to your reaction and why it still has not resolved.
Dr. Maziar Rezvani
Dr. Maziar Rezvani
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Dr. Andrew Murphy
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
6 doctors agree

In brief: Depends

Local reactions to bee stings can last for days on end.
Typically these reactions appear like the are infected but in reality are very brisk local reactions. You need to check with you doctor to make sure there is no infection that would require antibiotics. I would not be surprised if the just treated you symptomatically.

In brief: Depends

Local reactions to bee stings can last for days on end.
Typically these reactions appear like the are infected but in reality are very brisk local reactions. You need to check with you doctor to make sure there is no infection that would require antibiotics. I would not be surprised if the just treated you symptomatically.
Dr. Andrew Murphy
Dr. Andrew Murphy
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Dr. Sahba Ferdowsi
General Practice
6 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

I would have a healthcare professional examin if there is an infection.

In brief: Yes

I would have a healthcare professional examin if there is an infection.
Dr. Sahba Ferdowsi
Dr. Sahba Ferdowsi
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1 comment
Dr. David Wishnew
yellow jacket sting leaves a portion of the "stinger" in the wound, so this could be a foreign body reaction
Dr. David Wishnew
Wound care
5 doctors agree

In brief: Wasp sting.

When wasps sting, they leave a small portion of the barb in the wound.
This foreign body is a protein and it can elicit a strong inflammatory response, characterized by swelling, redness, pain, and itching. Also, it is possible that there is an infection in the site. Either way, a visit to a doctor would be best to determine what is going on.

In brief: Wasp sting.

When wasps sting, they leave a small portion of the barb in the wound.
This foreign body is a protein and it can elicit a strong inflammatory response, characterized by swelling, redness, pain, and itching. Also, it is possible that there is an infection in the site. Either way, a visit to a doctor would be best to determine what is going on.
Dr. David Wishnew
Dr. David Wishnew
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Dr. Paul Carter
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
5 doctors agree

In brief: Could be infected

Yellow jacket stings are the most likely hymenoptera stings to become infected.
See your doc.

In brief: Could be infected

Yellow jacket stings are the most likely hymenoptera stings to become infected.
See your doc.
Dr. Paul Carter
Dr. Paul Carter
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