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First Aid Questions


New Member
Hi Everyone

Is there a doctor in the house? I have compiled a check list of "Things to Take", mostly compiled by reading about things that other people have taken. However, I am not familiar with a few of the terms that I have gleaned from other lists. Can anyone tell me about these things--specifically, what are they and why people recommend them?

Mycins--one person said this was recommended for fungus (???)
Iodine? --Is this for wounds/blisters?




Maggie Ramsay
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago de Compostela (2005) Via Francigena (2010) Le Puy to St Jean (2014)
Hi Dreamcatcher
I would love to have the benefit of your gleanings. If you had time to write down the full list I think it would be very helpful to lots of people as well as myself, ans would probably result in a very useful discussion from previous pilgrims.
Iodine is a topical ( applied on the skin) antiseptic. When I was a kid, we called it "monkey blood." You could tell if someone's mom had dosed them up with it because they had orange spots where the iodine was applied. :)

Melatonin is used by some travellers as a sleep aid on long flights as well as an aid in resetting your biological clock after travelling long distances.

The other might be some sort of treatment for athlete's foot.

I agree with the other poster: post your list of stuff that you've gathered. I'm sure Ivar could use it on the Wiki page.

Buen Camino!
some medical answers

Not a Doctor yet (1 yr to go!) but for what its worth:

Iodine: is a topical (use on skin surface) antiseptic/microbicidal. Don't carry a bottle of it. You can buy prep-pads or swab sticks. Better yet, buy the Betadine ones (a povidone-iodine solution that is a bit stronger). This would be handy in case of blisters, bug bites, cuts, scrapes etc, esp when you dont have the proper hygenic conditions to care for them.

Melatonin: is a hormone naturally secreted by your pineal gland (in response to light) to regulate sleep rhythms. I've heard there are synthetic supplements available, but it seems a bit extreme to take it. I wouldnt take any hormones unless it was absolutely neccessary. Why put that into your body. If you have sleeping problems, best take Valerian root tincture/herbal supplements.

"Mycins" refer to a number of different antibiotics like Vancomycin, Streptomycin etc (prescription only). Antibiotics are taken for specific infections and are not to be carried "preventively" as you risk developing antibiotic-resistant strains of whatever you're infected with.

Anti-fungal agents usually end in "azole" as in Fluconazole, Miconazole. If you have a known fungal infection, just take whatever your Dr has prescribed (eg Lamisil for a toenail inf etc).

My personal reccommendation si Cortaid for everyone! Or just your simple tube of Hydrocortisone. Apply on any bite, rash, hive, redness and kaboom! A wonderful anti-inflammatory ointment.

peace and goodness to all!


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
You don't need a lot of first aid stuff for the camino. Spain is chock full of Farmacia.

You might get the following:
A blister - Compeed, love it or hate it, I personally think it's fantastic. It wouldn't be pricey otherwise!
An infected blister - a nice soak in salty water (salt from any village shop), or Iodine if it goes really gammy
A cut or a grazed knee - a packet of plasters and a couple of stick on wound dressings
Aches - ibuprofen tablets
Insect bites - anthisan cream
Sweat rashes or athlete's foot - hydrocortisone cream and canesten cream (also come as a combo)
Any prescription stuff you normally take.

Red Kite

If you're having trouble sleeping I recommend a 25k walk, a menu del dia and half a bottle of wine. Worked every time for me! :lol:

Seriously, I can't understand why you'd need something to help you sleep. Although earplugs might help in some of the busier albergues!


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
That's so true. The Camino is a health-giving thing: it makes me a bit saddened to read all these posts of people filling huge bags with medications and all manner of paraphenalia aimed at averting the mauling they imagine they will get. The most important things you can do for your health are simply: eat healthily and drink sensibly, stay hydrated, prevent sunburn, keep your feet soft and moisturised, listen to your what your body is telling you and pace yourself. I came back from the Camino a renewed and very healthy and stronger person.



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