Can you be allergic to mosquito bites?

Or even specifically one kind of mosquito?

I’ve always been the mosquitoes’ favorite treat. (So’s my mom, but me much more so.) They just love the hell out of biting me. I’ll be in a group of ten people and everybody else gets a bite or two and I get ten or twenty. Now, I know some people are just more attractive. (Don’t hate me for it.) But I also welt up terribly sometimes.

Yesterday I went over to my boyfriend’s office, which is kinda near the river and such and has quite the mosquito army. There were no mosquitoes in his office when I walked in - they followed me in, bit him once and me ten times, and followed me out when I left. The welt on my face was… impressive. He said it looked like a particularly lackluster demon-of-the-week on Buffy. It was easily the size of the last joint on my thumb. Others weren’t quite that bad, but all were exceptional. One on my foot kept me awake last night.

The only other time I’ve had thumb-size welts was also at his place, last Fourth of July. I was wearing a bathing suit and my back was bare, and they got me through one of those webbing chairs. It was “oh my god what happened to your back?” bad. We put vodka on it for lack of another option. Maybe it made them tipsy, at any rate.

So is it possible to be allergic to mosquito bites in general? Is it plausible to be allergic to just the mosquitoes from down-by-the-railroad-tracks? (They look like the regular kind.) Is it possible to be dangerously allergic to them, because this gets worse every time? It would totally suck to live in South Carolina and have to be afraid of them - you’d have to go to parties in a beekeeper’s suit and ask for your burger to be put in a blender so you can drink it through a cleverly designed straw port.

Pro tip - put Scotch tape on mosquito bites. It might just be psychological, or it might just keep you from scratching them, but it really does help me at least.

Oh yes. They pump all sorts of anticoagulants and other proteins into you when they bite, so there’s plenty of foreign particles for your system to react to.

If they pump a slightly different mix of ‘foreign’ into you, you’d have a different response. I suppose if they habitually fed on something you are allergic to (e.g. horses) you might react to left-over bits of that?

I believe any severe allergy can, in extremes, lead to things like anaphylactic shock. My advice would be to see an allergy specialist, who could give you the straight dope on all this whether you actually are allergic, and also let you know if you are in any danger.
If you actually are severely allergic to mosquitoes, it may be that you also have other severe allergies you haven’t discovered yet - e.g. wasp stings etc, in which case it would be very handy to know, and maybe to have an epi pen.

I’ve never been stung by a bee or wasp or anything, actually. The only other thing that’s generally bitten me is fire ants, to which I react normally, and once or twice those big damned flies. I’m not allergic to anything else (except codeine) as far as I know - fine around any animal, etc.

Do yourself a favor and high thee to the allergist. You may well have a minor allegy to insect bites and stings that could become progressively serious. They are poorly understood phenomena from what I’m given to understand. I know someone who is deathly allergic to wasp stings and according to him, he was fine for 25 years until that last sting that sent him to the hospital.

Better safe than sorry in this case.

Yeah, I’m allergic to mosquito bites. They swell up and blister and look like nothing on earth–sometimes they bruise and I look like I fell down the stairs or something. I wear mosquito repellant all summer long.

Some damned thing (possibly not a mosquito?) bit me at this wedding yesterday on my foot and it’s sore and hurts like all hell. It’s weirdly swollen and red and my shoe is hurting it. Summer sucks.

I may call my doctor and ask if she thinks it’s a good idea to see an allergist. I wonder if they’d be able to figure out what it is about the Special Mosquitoes, though? I got bitten by the regular kind at the wedding and just had normal-looking bites.

Himself’s office is right next to a huge power substation. I wonder if maybe the bugs are slowly turning me into Mosquito-Girl?

From what you describe, I wouldn’t be surprised if the allergist you consult wants you to consider carrying an Epi-pen. Who knows if the next exposure to the mosquito or biting insect to which you are sensitive is going to be the one that causes you to have breathing difficulties? Please do follow up.

Even though it is rare, it is possible to have a dangerous anaphylactic reaction to mosquito bites, so I definitely think you should talk to a doctor about this.

Do you ever wear mosquito repellant?

IMHO (and IAAD), based only on the info presented here, what’s described are severe local reactions, not systemic reactions. Which reduces the likelihood of any life-threatening systemic reactions like anaphyalxis in the future.

If a patient asked for my input and presented with info similar to that gleaned from the OP in this thread, I would (assuming I eliciting no further relevant history or abnormal physical exam findings) recommend taking antihistamines prior to possible exposure, treat local lesions vigorously with topical steroid creams to reduce local reaction, and consider topical benzocaine creams to treat itching and pain.

Cold showers help after, too. As does local ice.

The above is presented as a hypothetical scenario for a hypothetical patient and should not be construed as specific advice for any individual I’ve not interviewed and examined personally. :slight_smile:

If anyone wants more than that from me, break the right laws in the right state, and I’ll see if I can fit you into my schedule.

I don’t think I could even do that - you don’t see women, do you?

I rarely think to wear repellent because I don’t think I’m going to get bitten. I should have put something on for that Fourth of July party last year, but generally I get bitten when I’m just walking from my car to his office or whatever.

At the wedding yesterday some nice Mormon grandmother had a bottle of Skin So Soft in her purse after I got bitten a few times. Worked like a charm.

I don’t see many women as patients, but I do supervise the medical care at one women’s prison also. So I see a few.

Thank goodness - I was thinking I’d first have to commit a crime and then embark on a madcap Shakespearean caper, and I don’t think I’d make a very convincing man.

I get those same damn giant mosquito welts myself. If it’s on my face, it’s guaranteed to become gigantic, but plenty of other bites do as well.

Zsofia, what’s your complexion like? I have a homegrown theory that mosquitos tend to like fair-skinned folks best. I’ve known plenty of pasty people, and I’ve noticed a tendency for the mosquitos to eat our kind alive. Of course, I could be full of it with my theory as well. Perhaps you can add a data point here. :slight_smile:

I’m very fair-skinned, but my mother who also get bitten a ton has an olive complexion. My dad is fair like me and doesn’t get bitten like we do. My boyfriend has dark hair but blue eyes and doesn’t get bitten. On the other hand, I have read somewhere or other that fair people are more likely to be attractive to mosquitoes. Also something about bananas, but I can’t place it.