Brown recluse spider bite nearly kills Nebraska man - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Brown recluse spider bite nearly kills Nebraska man

A lethal spider bite kept this man in bed for five days. (Source KETV/CNN) A lethal spider bite kept this man in bed for five days. (Source KETV/CNN)

LINCOLN, NE (KETV/CNN) - Kelly Leisure never thought something in his closet could send him to the hospital.

He learned the hard way.

"This is the closet where he apparently came from," Leisure said. "He got me through my hoodie."

The brown recluse spider kept Leisure in bed for five days. The bite nearly killed him.

"Low and behold I was feeling sick when I got home," Leisure said. "If I would have been in that room for another 24 hours, I would have been gone."

Leisure went to the hospital and doctors rushed him into surgery. He has a six-inch wound on his back to show for it.

"They (recluse spiders) are more common ... than some people think," said exterminator Carl Braun. "All spiders have venom, the particular venom in the brown recluse spider causes tissue necrosis."

That means the venom kills body tissue.

Jonathan Larson, a spider expert, said spiders are not that aggressive.

"This isn't 'Arachnophobia' or 'Eight Legged Freaks,' " Larson said. "They're not looking for human blood or anything like that. They are just something that we accidentally interact with."

In other words, spiders aren't going to come looking for you.

"As long as they can find food and feel sheltered in that spot then they'll wait out a whole winter or sometime like that," Larson said.

Because many of them look the same, it's hard to tell many spiders apart.

Experts say a brown recluse spider's size is anywhere from a dime to a quarter, but if it's any bigger than that then it is probably not a brown recluse.

Don't be shy about seeking help, right away.

"If you see one it is a good bet that there are probably a few others around," Larson said.

Copyright 2018 KETV via CNN. All rights reserved.

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