Caterpillar sting sends Rankin County girl to ER

RANKIN COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) - A Rankin County girl is recovering tonight from a poisonous caterpillar sting.

She was rushed to the emergency room the morning after a backyard camp-out. The girl and her mother said they were caught off guard by the sting and the procedure to treat it.

"I was doing a little flip, and I stepped on what I thought was a sticker at first," said 12-year -old Mary Bratton Guest.

Mary Bratton decided to celebrate the end of school at a friend's house with a backyard camp out in hammocks. The set-up was grand, the girls never thinking a caterpillar would end it all.

"I've never seen her in so much pain," said Renee Guest, Mary Bratton's mom. "I just had no idea that caterpillars could sting or be poisonous. We just didn't know."

Guest said a physician at an urgent care clinic advised her to take Mary Bratton to see a doctor at the emergency room.

"Her friend's mom had taken a picture of the caterpillar, and the doctor was able to identify it as a Tree Asp."

Not only was a photo captured, video of the culprit showed it slithering back to its caterpillar life. All the while, there was tedious work to be done to the sting by the doctor.

"He got a special pair of glasses, and got some tweezers to get out any big pieces," Guest said. "Then, he got the piece of tape and got it on, and took it off really quickly to get any small pieces that may still be in her foot."

The existence of poisonous caterpillars is knowledge this family won't soon forget, especially Mary Bratton.

"It was really bad," she said. "It hurt a lot."

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