Chantelle Taylor (middle) with her sister, Cindy-Lou Taylor (left) and their mum Daphne Taylor (right).
Chantelle Taylor (middle) with her sister, Cindy-Lou Taylor (left) and their mum Daphne Taylor (right). Contributed

STINGER SCARE: 'We didn't think she'd make it'

CHANTELLE Taylor still remembers the day her heart stopped twice after being stung by a jellyfish 19 years ago.

The former Hervey Bay woman was at the beach on January 23 1999 with family when the day took a turn for the worse.

"We were all at Shelly Beach and I was sitting on the boogie board with my cousin and watching some dolphins and that's when I was stung," she said.

"I noticed the pain straight away and I've never experienced a pain like it since."

Chantelle, who was 10-years-old at the time, was rushed to hospital where she suffered two cardiac arrests.

Her mother, Daphne thought she had lost her precious daughter.

"It was really bad, she was screaming in pain and frothing at the mouth," Daphne said.

"When they told us to call the family to the hospital, we didn't think she'd make it."

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Originally under the belief she had been stung by an irukandji, the symptoms presented suggested otherwise, according to health professionals.

A Wide Bay Hospital and Health spokesman said Chantelle received treatment and pain relief for multiple painful erythematous wheal, a localised reaction around the site of a non-penetrating skin injury.

On January 24, Chantelle was discharged.

The spokesman said while symptoms recorded were consistent with some types of marine jellyfish stings, the symptoms were localised and not consistent with an irukandji sting.

Irukandji sting symptoms affect a person's nervous system rather than pain localising to a spot on the body.

Regardless of the species, Chantelle, now 29, said after hearing an irukandji had been caught off Fraser Island, she hoped anyone who stepped foot in the water would be cautious.

"I'm too scared to go in the water even after all of these years," she said.

"I just want everyone to be careful and to be aware of stingers which could be in the water.

"I don't want someone to go through what I went through."


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