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Ms He was weeding around her relatives' graves when the insects flew into her left eye.

But nope. It was bees.

"I saw something that looked like insect legs", the hospital's head of ophthalmology Dr Hung Chi-ting said at a press conference. Presuming it was soil, He washed her eye out with water, but later that evening her eye began to swell up and she felt a sharp pain under her eyelid. Again, no, it was bees.

While sweat bees tend to be a non-aggressive species of bees, they are known to be attracted to human sweat, hence, their name.

Be warned: the photo below is not for the faint of heart.

He was lucky she had not excessively rubbed her eyes after feeling pain, which could have led to further damage and potentially a loss of sight.

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A study this month from the Kansas Entomological Society found that sweat bees also look to tears as a protein source.

He's eyesight had been reduced to under 0.1, the equivalent of 20-200 vision on the Snellen eye chart measuring visual acuity, Hung told reporters.

After three hours of agony, He visited the hospital, where doctors determined she was suffering from cellulitis, a bacterial skin infection, and severe corneal erosion caused by the sweat bees.

The next day, however, she found her eye swollen and went to the hospital. They are not usually aggressive and only sting if touched.

Dr Hung said that the bees commonly nest in the mountains and close to graves, which is how they had come into contact with He. Ms He has been discharged and is expected to make a full recovery. As the Canadian Wildlife Federation notes, sweat bees can be identified by their bright metallic green or blue colour.

If you thought multiple bees flying around you were bad, just imagine having them inside your eyelid. "This is the first time in Taiwan we've seen something like this".


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