Sting Pain Index

Moderator: HAZ - Moderators

Linked Guides none
Linked Areas none
User avatar
Al_HikesAZ
Ol' Kokopelli
Posts: 1348
Joined: May 16 2005 1:01 pm
City, State: Scottsdale, AZ
Contact:

Sting Pain Index

Post by Al_HikesAZ » Jun 26 2012 8:12 pm

Thankfully, someone is doing the science so that the rest of us can know the meaning of pain without the actual pain. I have never really developed such an amazing vocabulary of pain.
http://scienceblogs.com/retrospectacle/ ... ich-sting/
Lucky for all of us, an entomologist named Justin O. Schmidt decided to take one for the team and let a lot of bees, ants, and wasps sting him. Then, he would rate the level of ouchiness in an admirably systematic method. He published his “Schmidt Pain Index” in 1984 (refined in later papers, eg 1990), which ranked the sting-pain on a scale from 0 (completely benign) to 4 (mostly dead). The descriptions of the stings he presents are borderline precious, hearkening back to wine-tastings or sampling a pungent perfume:

1.0 Sweat bee: Light, ephemeral, almost fruity. A tiny spark has singed a single hair on your arm.
1.2 Fire ant: Sharp, sudden, mildly alarming. Like walking across a shag carpet & reaching for the light switch.
Anybody can make a hike harder. The real skill comes in making the hike easier.
Not if we can help it UNCLE JACK. http://www.sleepingdogtv.com/reel/Uncle-Jack.aspx Not if we can help it.

User avatar
outdoor_lover
Dangling Kokopelli
Posts: 1664
Joined: Aug 19 2011 7:49 pm
City, State: Scottsdale, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by outdoor_lover » Jun 26 2012 8:38 pm

@Al_HikesAZ
Where in the world do you find this stuff? This is hilarious!!! :sl: Wonder if he rated a Scorpion Sting..... :sweat:
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, totally worn out & proclaiming, "Wow What a Ride!"

User avatar
big_load
You talkin' to me peli
Posts: 4347
Joined: Oct 28 2003 11:20 am
City, State: Andover, NJ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by big_load » Jun 26 2012 8:49 pm

The highest I've been on that scale is Paper Wasp. I agree that its worse than the Yellowjacket or Bald-faced Hornet, but it doesn't seem that much worse.

User avatar
Al_HikesAZ
Ol' Kokopelli
Posts: 1348
Joined: May 16 2005 1:01 pm
City, State: Scottsdale, AZ
Contact:

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by Al_HikesAZ » Jun 26 2012 9:06 pm

Outdoor Lover wrote:@Al_HikesAZWhere in the world do you find this stuff? This is hilarious!!! :sl:
Where in the World indeed. Be thankful I keep my postings on HAZ to the USA and Arizona. Otherwise I would warn you about Koalas giving you an STD. http://io9.com/5920738/you-can-accident ... om-a-koala :o :scared:
This is something you never want to explain to a doctor. Certainly not when you have to include the phrase, "I was just trying to cuddle it." So remember, when you see a koala - don't pick it up.
Anybody can make a hike harder. The real skill comes in making the hike easier.
Not if we can help it UNCLE JACK. http://www.sleepingdogtv.com/reel/Uncle-Jack.aspx Not if we can help it.

User avatar
chumley
Highway Artist
Posts: 6883
Joined: Sep 18 2002 8:59 am
City, State: Tempe, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by chumley » Jun 26 2012 9:22 pm

Outdoor Lover wrote:Wonder if he rated a Scorpion Sting..... :sweat:
I'd be very surprised if he hasn't. Perhaps not even on purpose. He works at the Carl Hayden Bee Research Center ... in Tucson.
Highway to hell

User avatar
MtnBart01
Chipita Whirlybird
Posts: 494
Joined: Aug 23 2005 9:26 am
City, State: Chipita Park, Co

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by MtnBart01 » Jun 26 2012 9:26 pm

Surprised by the honey bee rating. I didn't find the 30+ stings I got from Nordhoff Hope that painful. Scary until the ordeal was done, but not that painful. The single wasp sting I got the same summer in Louisiana hurt more than the combined Killer Bee stings. However, the hornets that got me on two separate occasions in Oregon were painful. Granted I'm allergic to that variety, but the sting sites on both occasions felt like they were on fire for a couple of weeks. Part of that may have been the cellulitis and extreme swelling from the allergy, but I still found the wasp and hornet stings more painful than the africanized honeybees. The bees were the meanest and took the longest to kill, but the hornets stung me repeatedly until I killed the entire nest. : rambo : :sl:
LET IT SNOW! Let it SNOW! Let it Snow!

User avatar
chumley
Highway Artist
Posts: 6883
Joined: Sep 18 2002 8:59 am
City, State: Tempe, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by chumley » Jun 26 2012 9:47 pm

I'm not a scientist so I'll defer to people who know, but I always thought that different people have different reactions to different stings based on allergies and/or tolerances to the various venoms and irritants that are injected. Essentially, I could feel 5x the pain from a scorpion sting than you, but perhaps feel 1/5 the pain of a hornet sting. Perhaps that's an extreme example, but I have always been under the impression that reactions to stings (and therefore pain level) is not always constant from one person to another.

And my worst sting experience was being third in a line of hikers where the first stepped on a hornets nest in an old log. I forget if it was 15 or 18 stings, but pumpkin that hurt.

I am still surprised by the length of time the pain lingers from a sting from those stupid little fire ants I sometimes encounter in my yard. They might win the award for the size-to-pain ratio.
Highway to hell

User avatar
SuperstitionGuy
Retired Reminiscer
Posts: 1553
Joined: Dec 25 2005 8:24 pm
City, State: Apache Junction, Arizona

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by SuperstitionGuy » Jun 27 2012 6:46 am

With our experience hiking and backpacking the Arizona desert maybe we should create a cactus pain index for the rest of the world and I nominate jumping cholla to be at the top of the list! :scared: :stretch:
A man's body may grow old, but inside his spirit can still be as young and restless as ever.
- Garth McCann from the movie Second Hand Lions

Another victim of Pixel Trivia.

Current avatar courtesy of Snakemarks

User avatar
PLC92084
∞kopelli
Posts: 723
Joined: Dec 22 2009 8:46 am
City, State: Vista, CA

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by PLC92084 » Jun 27 2012 7:49 am

@SuperstitionGuy
I'll bet the guy in Yuma would disagree with you! He probably thinks Saguaros are the worst!!

User avatar
SuperstitionGuy
Retired Reminiscer
Posts: 1553
Joined: Dec 25 2005 8:24 pm
City, State: Apache Junction, Arizona

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by SuperstitionGuy » Jun 27 2012 7:53 am

PLC92084 wrote:@SuperstitionGuy
I'll bet the guy in Yuma would disagree with you! He probably thinks Saguaros are the worst!!
Saguaros don't jump!
A man's body may grow old, but inside his spirit can still be as young and restless as ever.
- Garth McCann from the movie Second Hand Lions

Another victim of Pixel Trivia.

Current avatar courtesy of Snakemarks

User avatar
CannondaleKid
Soap Box Kopelli
Posts: 1249
Joined: May 04 2004 8:39 pm
City, State: Mesa, AZ
Contact:

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by CannondaleKid » Jun 27 2012 8:48 am

chumley wrote:I always thought that different people have different reactions to different stings based on allergies and/or tolerances to the various venoms and irritants that are injected.
That's what I believe as well. I've been stung by a wide variety of bees, yellow-jackets, hornets and wasps on both the African and North American continents, but none came close to my ant experiences here in AZ.

I'm not familiar enough to know whether to call them red ants, fire ants, or whatever, but I've been bitten a number of times and stung multiple times on one occasion. One the whole I'd rather be bitten than stung.

For me the pain from ant bites starts as a pin-prick but rises exponentially the longer the ants held on, eventually to the point where I was in a frenzy just to get them off me! The last time was just over a week ago on Granite Mountain when somehow I got a mass of 5-6 ants under my gaiters and on my Achilles. It took some effort to get them all off and the pain by then was enough I could not continue standing. Right away I rubbed hydro-cortisone cream on the area but it was more a placebo than actually making a difference. It took a while before I could zone-out the pain enough to continue the hike. I had lingering pain for 3-4 days and even now, 8 days later I still have a raised red area on my Achilles. But again, nothing like the ant stings...

The one occasion in which I was stung by a group of ants was the most painful and long-lasting experience I've ever had... it even topped getting my left pinkie finger sheared through.

Sometime back in 2008 if I recall, I was in the Bulldog OHV area setting up a tripod for some full moon shots over the Supes. About halfway on my 200 yard walk from the car to where I was going to set up I noticed a large ant-hill teeming with ants so I by-passed it by at least 40 feet. With the moon-rise still some time away I took my time doing some experimenting with different shots (this was very early in my HDR experimentation phase, albeit short-lived) and after about 30 minutes as I leaned forward, all-of-a-sudden I get this intense, mind-numbing pain from my feet that was so fierce it knocked me down. When I looked at my feet, there were red ants all over them, and again it was a frenzy to get them off as soon as possible. Then even though the ants were off me, the pain was no less and it took everything I could do to grab my camera and tripod and hobble back to the car, avoiding a line of ants all the way.

After the fact, I realized the ants had been on my feet and very likely one got under a sandal strap and when I leaned forward the strap pressed down on an ant and as they are known to do, it sent a signal to all the others to sting at the same time, which they did. As I mentioned above, the pain from this lingered longer than anything I have yet experienced. For over two weeks I had the constant feeling that something like large needles or even nails was sticking into each and every wound location. I slowly began to subside but it was a full 4 months before I had no pain at all. And even now, 4 years later I still have two red spots providing witness to the event.

What really blew me away at the time, was the ants sought me out! There were no noticeable ants anywhere in the 100+ yards between my car and the ant hill, nor were there any between the ant hill and where I set up another 100 yards farther. I only saw them within 25-30' from the entrance to the hill as I walked by leaving a good 10' between me and the closest ant. Yet in a matter of 30 minutes they had made a trail to the location where I was stung! And seeing that line of ants toward my location from the hill when I was hustling out of there, well, it was disconcerting to say the least.

And ever since I've been quite wary of and be careful to keep my distance from ants. And due to that fact, on my Granite Mountain hike I was very surprised because I had seen absolutely no ants wherever I stopped to take a photo, and I still wonder how a number of them got on together.

As far as I know, I don't have any particular allergies to certain bites/stings but again, for me the ants have been by far the most painful.
CannondaleKid

User avatar
cactuscat
Zion Dreamer
Posts: 681
Joined: Oct 15 2002 12:08 pm
City, State: Safford

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by cactuscat » Jun 27 2012 11:39 am

Tarantula Hawk Wasp is supposed to be one of the most painful, and looking at them I have no trouble believing it ... You have to figure that if the sting will paralyze a tarantula, it's gotta hurt! Thankfully, they don't seem inclined to sting people too often.
Where is the "dislike" button?

User avatar
paulhubbard
Harley Kokopelli
Posts: 609
Joined: Jun 01 2010 9:54 am
City, State: Mesa, AZ
Contact:

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by paulhubbard » Jun 27 2012 3:36 pm

I've been stung by a Bark Scorpion (positively ID'd) and it sounds similar to Cannondale's ant experience, but worse. The little devil (trust me, they are not so distant relatives of Satan himself :x ) was in my silverware drawer. When I reached in for a spoon to stir my coffee before the light of dawn, I felt what I thought was a bread bag twist-tie thingy. I picked it up to throw it away when felt the legs squirming, and before I could shake it out of my grasp it stung me on the tip of my thumb.

220 volts of electricity delivered via a red hot needle!!!! The pain was so immediately intense that I couldn't even move my hand, and I was shaking all over (not convulsing) from the pain for about 30 minutes. For the next two to four hours the only thing that mildly relieved the agony was ice (and some leftover Vicadin). Within 10 minutes my arm was tingling and numb up to my shoulder - The kind of numb you feel when the dentist's novacaine wears off, that dull, achy kind of numb. My arm stayed numb all day, and my thumb felt like it was stuck in the light socket for the next week.

It was a full 4 months before I finally got full feeling back in the tip of my thumb.

I can honestly say the only time I've experienced worse pain was when I broke my leg snow skiing when I was 10 years old.
Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.

User avatar
RickVincent
Augerpelli
Posts: 275
Joined: Aug 20 2009 9:57 am
City, State: Mesa, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by RickVincent » Jun 28 2012 10:32 am

SuperstitionGuy wrote:... I nominate jumping cholla to be at the top of the list! :scared: :stretch:
On a scale of 1-10: Getting stuck by a jumping cholla, 1.....Pulling it out of your skin, 10.
This is my gym. I have to travel down a bumpy road to get there. There are no treadmillls, no machines, and no personal trainers. I walk..I run..I breathe the fresh air. I can go any time I want, as much as I want and there is no membership fee.

User avatar
Trishness
Exploring Kokopelli
Posts: 629
Joined: May 21 2003 9:33 pm
City, State: Apache Junction, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by Trishness » Jun 28 2012 8:27 pm

Rick Vincent wrote:
SuperstitionGuy wrote:... I nominate jumping cholla to be at the top of the list! :scared: :stretch:
On a scale of 1-10: Getting stuck by a jumping cholla, 1.....Pulling it out of your skin, 10.
And those little suckers just don't want to let go!!!!

If you are allergic to ANY of the stinging critters the pain is even worse on the Schitttt scale...I mean Schmidt scale. I found out I was allergic to white face/bald face hornets when I was stung back in CT trying to kill a nest of them. NASTY NASTY flying critters.
Trish-Kabob

"May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds" Ed Abbey

User avatar
SuperstitionGuy
Retired Reminiscer
Posts: 1553
Joined: Dec 25 2005 8:24 pm
City, State: Apache Junction, Arizona

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by SuperstitionGuy » Jun 30 2012 6:21 pm

Trishness wrote:
Rick Vincent wrote:
SuperstitionGuy wrote:... I nominate jumping cholla to be at the top of the list! :scared: :stretch:
On a scale of 1-10: Getting stuck by a jumping cholla, 1.....Pulling it out of your skin, 10.
And those little suckers just don't want to let go!!!!

If you are allergic to ANY of the stinging critters the pain is even worse on the Schitttt scale...I mean Schmidt scale. I found out I was allergic to white face/bald face hornets when I was stung back in CT trying to kill a nest of them. NASTY NASTY flying critters.
The problem with jumping cholla is that they attack you in the most vulnerable areas of your body:
http://hikearizona.com/photo.php?ZIP=101619 :scared:
A man's body may grow old, but inside his spirit can still be as young and restless as ever.
- Garth McCann from the movie Second Hand Lions

Another victim of Pixel Trivia.

Current avatar courtesy of Snakemarks

User avatar
Alston_Neal
Tweet Boogie
Posts: 1681
Joined: Apr 19 2008 5:53 pm
City, State: Phoenix, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by Alston_Neal » Jul 02 2012 10:13 am

A wasp sting to me will push me over the edge. Incredible pain, swelling and itching.

But the most painful sting I ever felt was from the IRS.
In Japan they say only old people and crazy people hike mountains...........yep


Our humble abode..
http://www.oldterritorialshop.com

User avatar
Canyonram
Exploring Kokopelli
Posts: 230
Joined: Jun 01 2006 9:03 pm
City, State: Payson, AZ

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by Canyonram » Jul 04 2012 8:05 am

Medscape has a slideshow illustrating some of the 'bug bites':
http://reference.medscape.com/features/ ... c=nl_slide

My nomine for 'Most painful bite' has to be that of the Brown Recluse Spider. The bite itself can go unnoticed but once the digestive enzymes begin reacting with tissue, the wound can become a gaping necrotic wound.
http://reference.medscape.com/features/ ... pider-bite

Do an image search on brown recluse bite---if you dare.

User avatar
kevinweitzel75
Kokevinkopelli
Posts: 521
Joined: Apr 04 2010 1:15 pm
City, State: Mesa, AZ.

Re: Sting Pain Index

Post by kevinweitzel75 » Jul 04 2012 9:31 am

Most painful for me was a bite from a black widow on my upper inner thigh. 6 hours in the ER. It felt as if my entire thigh was being ripped apart slowly. :stretch: Black widows are no joke.
"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the road less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
Robert Frost

User avatar
kingsnake
Mickey Mouse is a Rat!
Posts: 1457
Joined: Dec 20 2010 7:14 am
City, State: Sunnyslope, PHX
Contact:

Bullet Ants King of the Sting

Post by kingsnake » Jul 22 2013 12:43 pm

Bullet Ants King of the Sting

(I came up with the headline myself; I should send my resume to British tabloids ...)
http://prestonm.com : Everyone's enjoyment of the outdoors is different and should be equally honored.

Post Reply

Return to “Fauna”


cron