Sister Hospitalized From Bed Bug Bites
WLKY.com (Louisville, KY)
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
JEFFERSONVILLE, IN - A
Jeffersonville woman said her 81-year-old sister was hospitalized
after receiving severe bedbug bites.
Bedbugs are commonly found in apartment complexes,, and the
Health Department said one Jeffersonville building has gotten
several bed bug complaints.
"These people are actually paying to live with bedbugs," said
Mary Hanley, the sister of a bedbug victim.
Hanley's said her 81-year-old sister was just released from the
hospital after suffering severe bedbug bites.
Hanley's sister's back is red and splotchy and the family said
she got the bedbugs at her apartment in the Claysburg Towers in
"They're terrible. We pulled it back and it's like moving, the
sheets are moving. It was terrible, horrible," Hanley said.
The Health Department said bedbugs don't actually transmit
diseases, like mosquitoes, but they do draw blood and hospitals
stays because of their effects aren't unheard of.
"Some cases we have heard of people being hospitalized for
secondary infections, not necessarily because of the bedbug and
what it did, the bite and the scratching that happened later
could've caused the issues," said Doug Bentfield with the Clark
County Health Department.
The tower's management declined to comment on the issue, but the
Clark County Health Department said since 2009 eight cases of
bedbugs have been reported at Claysburg Tower, a public housing
complex which is home to low-income seniors and residents on
"Me and my sister went over to her apartment and pulled her
covers back and they were just crawling everywhere and we were so
scared. We've never seen those before and then she had blood all
over her sheets where she had just been laying there," Hanley
"It's got nothing to do with the cleanliness of the environment
or anything. It's got everything to do with, were you in contact
with an area that just happens to have them?" Bentfield said.
Hanley said her sister, who has Alzheimer's, was one of the
original residents in the building and that many family members
have lived there in the past. She claimed they've never had a
problem there before.
"They weren't on that floor yet. They're going floor by floor
evidently, but they should have been doing better than this. It
should have never gotten to that point," Hanley said.
"The problem with apartment complexes is everybody has to get on
the same page so if there's a dwelling that has 40 different
families in it, you can't just treat one apartment. You have to
actually treat the entire facility," Bentfield said.
Hanley said she was told management is taking steps to remove
the bugs, but her sister plans on moving out.
"She's coming out of there. I'm taking her out. She can't stay
there," Hanley said.
Hanley said though her sister will move out of the Claysburg
Towers, they're too scared to bring her things with her.
The Health Department said the best way to avoid acquiring
bedbugs is to use extra caution when buying used furniture. At
hotels, keep personal items away from upholstered surfaces and
walls and check the bed for signs of the bugs before getting