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A Huntington woman has a frightening encounter

Last Modified: December 07, 2022



On August 9, around 6 p.m., Huntington resident Teresa Collins went outside to mow her lawn. She unintentionally ran the machine over a bee or wasp hive and was immediately swarmed. Teresa jumped into her pool to get the insects off of her.

She climbed out of the water and sat in her rocking chair to collect herself before she returned to her chore. She stood up, got about ten steps from her chair and was overcome with dizziness. Her tongue began to swell. Teresa, who is not allergic to bees, tried to call 911, but was becoming delusional. She blacked out before she could reach out for help.   

Thankfully, Teresa’s 16-year-old daughter found her and was able to speak with dispatchers. She reported that her mom was itching and flailing. EMS arrived and took Teresa to Parkview Huntington Hospital (PHH).

Paramedics believed Teresa had been stung by at least 12 bees or wasps, and was in anaphylactic shock. She had welts all over her chest. “I only live about 5 minutes away, but within those 5 minutes EMS took exceptional care of me and acted extremely quickly to save my life,” Teresa said. She felt, what she described as “a crazy feeling” in her chest, as her blood pressure went down to 70. “I was hooked up to several IVs, a heart monitor and oxygen. I heard the AED going off.”


PHH hospital staff was able to treat Teresa’s reaction. “I was actually able to leave around midnight because of the great care,” she said. “They also called the VA, where I work as a peer support specialist, and helped with insurance, which was huge and so helpful. It had all been taken care of.”

Now, months later and fully recovered, Teresa has had time to reflect on the day’s events and the kindness of those who impacted her outcome. “I can’t say enough about how grateful I am for the care I received that day,” she said. “The fact that all of the emergency response individuals were so respectful to my daughter means the world to me. It kept her calm enough to answer all their questions. Still now I tear up thinking about it, because not two weeks prior I was taken to the hospital after slipping on wet concrete and hitting my head on the floor. With that incident, my daughter was unable to handle talking to the dispatcher. All of the staff was so kind, and made her feel comfortable. They were extremely professional and caring.”

As for her experience at PHH, Teresa was impressed with the speed of action. “The care was outstanding. They were quick to do whatever they needed to do to help me and keep me informed at the same time. Everyone was so respectful. They went above and beyond to provide incredible care to me and my daughter.”

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