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An allergist and dermatologist from Passau is currently warning about the so-called black mosquito. If one is bitten by this, the consequences could be "serious to life-threatening" according to the doctor, since the mosquito releases blood-thinning and allergizing substances when biting. The health department, however, classifies the danger as much less threatening, reports the "Passauer Neue Presse".
Black mosquitoes bite unnoticed
Black mosquitoes are widespread, fly-like insects, of which around 50 species are currently known in Germany. Unlike mosquitoes, they do not fly in apartments, but generally attack outside, especially on warm to humid and weak-windy days. The approach is silent and you don't notice when the mosquito lands on the skin. The mosquitoes do not bite, they bite - because unlike “sting suckers”, they first create a wound with their sharp mouth tools, from which they then suck up the blood.
Patients with massive physical reactions
A bite of the black mosquito remains painless at first, but can obviously have bad consequences. The medical doctor Dr. Claus Gruß from Passau has now warned the city and the health department of the dangers of the black mosquito. As the "Passauer Neue Presse" reports, patients with massive physical reactions to a mosquito attack have repeatedly visited the practice of allergists and dermatologists in the past few weeks.
According to Gruss, the findings are “serious to life-threatening”, and in the medium term the bites could even have fatal consequences. The violent effects would stem from the fact that the black mosquito emits blood-thinning and allergizing substances.
Only itching occurs at first
At the beginning, those bitten would hardly notice anything, because apart from itching, there were no symptoms at first. Later, however, bruises that are three to five centimeters in size and swellings, which could even be up to 10 centimeters in diameter. Many patients also develop edema through water retention. "And all of this happens regardless of whether you are allergic or not," reports the dermatologist.
New subspecies from Southeast Europe could be the cause
Although cortisone with an antiseptic can be used for treatment, the doctor warns, especially in children or patients who have been bitten several times, that it could be dangerous one day. From the point of view of the health authority, however, the black mosquito is far less threatening. However, those responsible would continue to monitor the situation on site to take action if necessary, the newspaper reports.
Although black mosquitoes are not uncommon in Passau, Gruss says that the massive effects of the bites this year can be traced back to a newly immigrated or introduced mosquito subspecies from Southeast Europe.
What to do in case of a bite?
If there is no severe swelling after the bite, it is usually sufficient to cool the affected area (for example with cold rags or cool packs) and disinfect the area. Important: Despite the strong itching, mosquito bites should never be scratched due to the risk of infection.
If pathogens penetrate the wound and cause inflammation, severe swelling and fever can occur. If the germs get into the bloodstream, blood poisoning (sepsis) can occur, which in the worst case can lead to serious complications and even death. If the bite becomes inflamed, a doctor should always be consulted as a precaution. The same applies if there is severe swelling or discoloration.
The best protective measures
The simplest and safest home remedy for mosquitoes is long-sleeved clothing, because since the black mosquitoes do not have a proboscis, they cannot pierce the clothing. Anyone who spends a lot of time outdoors in regions with high traffic should therefore cover as much skin as possible throughout the day. Bright, loose clothing made of firm fabric (e.g. linen) is recommended.
Repellents with active ingredients such as DEET or Icaridin also offer help against the pests. Depending on the concentration, these last about four to five hours, then the protection should be renewed. As a rule, no special protective measures are necessary in the apartment, since the black mosquito normally does not fly into the house. (No)