His friends call him "Spider Man," but that doesn't bug him.
Australian Dylan Thomas picked up an unexpected souvenir on a recent trip to Bali. Doctors said they removed a tiny tropical spider, about the size of a match head, from his torso after it burrowed under his skin.
Researchers interviewed by i09, however, said that it's highly unlikely that a spider burrowed under the 21-year-old's skin. They think it's more plausible that the invasive bug was a mite or a tick.
"I think this is extremely suspect, unusual, and likely not possible," Christopher Buddle, associate professor at McGill University's Department of Natural Resource Sciences, told the website. "I can think of no valid reason why a spider might crawl beneath skin through a scar."
Whatever it was, it wasn't pleasant.
At first, doctors thought that the red rash that ran from Thomas' navel to his nipple was just a bug bite. Thomas was given antihistamine and sent on his way.
But then the rash exploded into painful, nasty blisters. A dermatologist determined that what they think is a spider had entered his body through an appendix scar, then burrowed its way up near his sternum. Not surprisingly, this hurt like hell.
“It wasn’t really a tickling sensation. Obviously, once the venom started to affect my skin, it was a really burning sensation, like a searing feeling,” Thomas told the Bunbury Mail.
The invader supposedly lived inside him for about three days, and was dead when the dermatologist finally removed it. The specimen was collected and sent away to be identified.
“Haven’t felt so violated in my life before! Just glad it’s all over,” Thomas wrote in a Facebook post.
He said his friends have nicknamed him Spider Man. He doesn't mind the name, but he's hoping his friends will help him pay for a spider tattoo to cover up the "gnarly scar."