Got Bed Bugs? Bedbugger Forums » Detection / Identification of bed bugs

I think I'm just paranoid, but need opinion (PICS)

(5 posts)
  1. anonomysdude

    Joined: Sep '11
    Posts: 1


    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Sep 2 2011 9:53:23

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    First noticed some bumps/bites/rash on my elbow a few days ago. I have a history of rashes on my elbows due to heat (and it has been very hot), but I don't remember the rash looking like this.


    I tore apart all of my bedding and found a few stains on my pillow (could be due to anything i.e. acne, acne cream which is white however...) I have no bites on my face


    close up of each stain:

    ...a mark on the inside of my comforter (no idea how this got here because it is tucked between the wall and bed... however it could have been there forever and I'm just now noticing)


    ...and a mark on the mattress which I'm 95% sure is ink...


    No other bites at all to report. There's a lot of wood supporting the bed and I cannot find marks there either. I'm just looking for a professional opinion to ease my paranoia.


  2. jrbtnyc

    Joined: Sep '10
    Posts: 998


    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Sep 2 2011 10:51:01

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    Can't tell anything from bite symptoms or from spots. I think the experts here on won't even click on the links to view the photos.

    Watch for crawlies and if you see any, don't squish them and don't throw them away, catch them on tape or in a jar and post a good sharp up-close photo, including a coin or ruler in the photo for size comparison, for, usually, quick ID by those experts here on

    Remember, your bites might not be bed bugs, they could be a whole range of other things such as mosquitoes, fleas, mites, scabies, lice, prickly hairs on carpet beetle larvae, poison ivy, folliculitis, allergies, psychosomatic, or etc..

    Also remember that on some people bed bug bites don't show up for days or maybe even weeks.

    As for spots, they can come from even a far wider range of things that aren't bed bugs so it's not worth the experts' time to try assessing from that – *maybe* worth their having a look if they visit you in person, but otherwise they really can't tell anything at all from spots, blood streaks, etc..

  3. buggyinsocal

    Joined: Jun '08
    Posts: 2,431


    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Sep 2 2011 11:33:18

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    I didn't look at any of the pictures of bites because no one, not even a dermatologist with a lot of experience identifying insect bites, can look at an insect bite and be any more specific than "a bug from this group insects bit you."

    (With one exception. Docs have a test for scabies that can diagnose scabies. They take skin scrapings and can find conclusive evidence of scabies. Other than that, you're not going to get anything more specific than a group of insects.)

    It's important to remember that insect bites are an allergic reaction; allergic reactions among people vary widely. In fact, over time, the same person's allergic reaction can change. (I have an uncle who had a cat while his kids were young. Just as his kids were growing up and going away to college, his allergy to cats either developed or got much stronger. When his allergist told him that he was allergic to cats, and the family cat needed to find a new home or at least stay out of the bedroom, he refused to believe it since he'd lived with cats for over 20 years, so how could he be allergic?

    Allergies change over time, a fact he eventually came to accept after several asthma attacks.)

    The reason none of the old timers here are likely to look at photos of bites is that we can't tell you anything useful about them for those reasons.

    I see nothing in the photos of possible fecal matter that, if I found it in my home, would make me panic and start looking for other evidence of bugs. None of the possible fecal marks look bed bug related to me.

    If you're really anxious, you might consider installing passive monitors and educating yourself about how to inspect for bed bugs. Those are much more likely to be effective in catching bed bugs early than trying to figure it out from bites.

  4. bed-bugscouk

    Joined: Apr '07
    Posts: 18,188


    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Sep 2 2011 13:09:26

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    As others have said the bites pics are just bites and bites are at best non conclusive.

    The marks are almost all blood that has seeped from a cut / bite and are again non conclusive of bedbugs.

    However the last image sea89l.jpg although not bedbug is most likley dirt or grease but again is not bedbug related.

    You can sometimes tell things from bite locations, i.e. :

    • Lower body and ankles only - most likley fleas but not conclusive
    • Between fingers only or sometimes armpits and groin (rarely mouth sides as well) - scabies and in which case do a medical test which is called a scabies scrape test
    • Exposed or skin in contact with the bed only - most likley dust mite or medical allergy

    Aside from that bites cant really tell you anything although almost everyone initially focuses on them.

    Hope that helps.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    I am happy to answer questions in public but will not reply to message sent directly or via my company / social media. I am here to help everyone and not just one case at a time.

    In accordance with the AUP and FTC I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bed bug infestations. I also have a professional relationship with PackTite in that they distribute my product under their own branding. I do not however receive any financial remuneration for any comments I make about pro
  5. NewBlood

    Joined: Sep '09
    Posts: 185


    Posted 8 years ago
    Fri Sep 2 2011 13:54:18

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    Hey anonomysdude, I just wanted to add on to David's awesome post above.

    Many bites around the feet/ankles could also be chiggers if you have so much as grazed any segment of grass that contains these bugs. They tend to go after areas where skin is thin, or moist the most (the sock line, around the ankle, etc) and are almost microscopic in size (at least, the ones that bite you are).

    I had gone to a dermatologist when I had my bed bug scare - who took a biopsy of one of my bites. The result came back as "could be an allergy, or an insect bite". No one can really tell you what is causing the marks unless you actually SEE what it is that is biting you - and bites alone do not a bed bug make. My own marks are caused by exposure to carpet beetle hairs, despite my insistence that they were bed bug bites.

    - Newblood!

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