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WOMAN KILLED BY BEE STING; Inquest into death of Eileen, 90: Bee sting link to death.

Byline: NEIL ATKINSON

A BEE sting may have claimed the life of a 90-year-old woman.

Medical tests are now under way to determine how Eileen Pearson died.

And a theory that is being investigated by Coroners' officers is that she suffered anaphylactic shock after being stung.

Mrs Pearson, who lived in Staincliffe Road, Dewsbury, died on Sunday.

An inquest was expected to open today but only for identification purposes.

Inquiries into her death are now being carried out.

Bee stings are common, but only a handful of people suffer serious complications.

One person who knows is Huddersfield beekeeper Jason Clegg, who himself was hospitalised after a sting. "I was in hospital for 24 hours after suffering anaphylactic shock. "It was the seventh time I had been stung but the only time

I have had such a bad reaction. "The sting swelled up then turned into a rash and gradually my whole body started to swell and ache. In extreme cases, the swelling causes the airways to shut and the person dies. "That is very, very rare and I would estimate that it happens in only about one in a million cases.

"A lot depends on what causes the sting. People often say they have been stung by a bee but they can be mistaken for a wasp or a hornet, and the venom in each is different. Some people could be allergic to a bee but not to awasp, and vice versa. "It could be in a case like this poor lady in Dewsbury that she has gone through her whole life without ever being stung but then suddenly has a reaction to a sting." Bee stings are very common and are serious for those who are allergic to them.

When a bee stings, it leaves the stinger in the skin. The stinger will continue to pump venom into the body for up to 20 minutes, so it is important to remove the stinger as quickly as possible. The sting may be painful for a few hours. Swelling and itching may persist for a week.
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Title Annotation:News; Front Page
Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:Jun 29, 2010
Words:345
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