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Medical assistance for multiple large blisters, both feet!

Camino(s) past & future
2016
#1
Hi, does anyone know of a good doctor to treat multiple large blisters over both feet. Currently in Santa Catalina on way to rabanal and Ponferreda?
Thank you in advance.
 

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scruffy1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Holy Year from Pamplona 2010, SJPP 2011, Lisbon 2012, Le Puy 2013, Vezelay (partial watch this space!) 2014; 2015 Toulouse-Puenta la Reina (Arles)
#6
Time to reboot?
 
Camino(s) past & future
plan to walk in may (2017)
#7
Hi, does anyone know of a good doctor to treat multiple large blisters over both feet. Currently in Santa Catalina on way to rabanal and Ponferreda?
Thank you in advance.
Good luck. I thought I had bought the most comfortable hiking boots EVER, walked in them every day before I started the Camino, but after two days, my feet looked like this (see photo below). I'd spent a lot of money on the boots and refused to give them up. But my feet got worse and worse, so finally, I sucked it up and bought the new most comfortable shoes of my life (see photo below) and gave my blister causing boots to the woman at the post office for her daughter! The Keane sandals were fantastic and so comfortable, except I had to stop every so often to get the pebbles out :)
IMG_4815.jpeg IMG_5013.jpeg
 

ksam

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese '08, Frances '11, del Norte '14, Invierno '16, Ingles '17, Primitivo October 2018
#8
Oh wow!! Sending you healing thoughts and prayers!! Good Luck!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2014) Frances Pt1
(2015) Frances Pt2
(2016) Portuguese, from Lisbon
(2108) Frances in Sep/Oct
#9
Just a thought, are you still using the same socks you used when you did your training? In my opinion the socks are even more important than your boots in terms of avoiding blisters. I swear by 1000 Mike Socks which I've used on three full length Camino walks (CF and CP) plus other similar long walks in UK, without a single blister.

Whatever, I'm sorry that you are injured and hope that you get it sorted quickly. Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
2016 Sjpp to Sdc. 2017 Lisbon to Sdc to Finisterre. 2018 ?
#12
If stones are a problem, I'd be using some of that tape to cover the holes in the Keens while walking the stony paths. You could remove the tape to allow air to circulate when walking footpaths or along roads.
 

davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#13
Thank you everyone for your help. In the end he got a taxi back to Asorga, he'll get medical help there, and hopefully new boots!
Bless your heart... what an aggravating situation. I'm happy to hear that you will be able to get the help needed. But, please, no more boots :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
plan to walk in may (2017)
#14
If stones are a problem, I'd be using some of that tape to cover the holes in the Keens while walking the stony paths. You could remove the tape to allow air to circulate when walking footpaths or along roads.
Great idea! I wish I'd thought of that. For my next camino...
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
From Somport Jul-Sep 2018
#16
Compeed and a say of rest
Compeed should be only used if you know very well what you are doing.
I think that someone with large blisters should use compeed only with medical advice or the advice of an experienced pilgrim who can see the blisters and the boots.

If the cause of the blister remains and the blister under the compeed needs medical treatment there is a huge problem because of the high adherency of compeed (you cannot remove compeed easily).
 
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
#17
Hi,

Compeed is the worst thing you could do on large blisters. Beware of that!

Either, when you continue walking, you will tear the skin off your feet when taking off your socks. Or you will suffer a severe infection (blood poisoning) as Compeed not only seals the blister but also the bacteria in it and while you leave Compeed on your feet you do not see how the infection develops.

An experienced hospitalero or a nurse can help you to treat bigger blisters. They open it with a sterile injection needle (which you can buy in a Pharmacy), let the water flow out and inject some "betadine" (desinfectant, Iodid) instead, cover the blister loosely with gaze and let it dry overnight.

Best is to prevent blisters. When you feel, that some part of your shoe is rubbing on your skin, stop immediately and cover the skin with "tape" ( e. g. Leukotape, textile and a bit flexible - not the grey plastic stuff you see on the photo above).

BC
Alexandra
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - central from Oporto (2018 - planned)
#18
Hi, does anyone know of a good doctor to treat multiple large blisters over both feet. Currently in Santa Catalina on way to rabanal and Ponferreda?
Thank you in advance.
When we were in Astorga in 2016, my son had similar problems with multiple large blisters on both feet. There was a podiatry clinic in the large albergue at the entrance to the town, not far from the square with the town all. It was run by podiatry students from some college or university. For most people, they spent ten minutes or so patching up their blister and sent them along. For my son, they spend an hour and a half operating on his feet. We took a rest day after that, staying in an air conditioned hotel room. (He stayed in the hotel room, resting his feet. I wandered Astorga which was finishing its Romans and Asturians festival.) The next day we continued on.

The people at the podiatry clinic said that their school operated another clinic at an albergue in Ponferrada. So we could get his feet checked there. We didn't end up doing that. His feet were fine the rest of the Camino until Finisterre (we tried to walk a bit shorter distances each day).

But perhaps that podiatry clinic in Ponferrada operated by the same school, if it is still three, could help you (or check on the feet after the help received in Astorga, reading the later posts).
 
Camino(s) past & future
May 2013 Ponferrada to Santiago de Compostela.
Camino Portuguese Porto to SdeC May 31 2017.
#19
Good luck. I thought I had bought the most comfortable hiking boots EVER, walked in them every day before I started the Camino, but after two days, my feet looked like this (see photo below). I'd spent a lot of money on the boots and refused to give them up. But my feet got worse and worse, so finally, I sucked it up and bought the new most comfortable shoes of my life (see photo below) and gave my blister causing boots to the woman at the post office for her daughter! The Keane sandals were fantastic and so comfortable, except I had to stop every so often to get the pebbles out :)
View attachment 44459 View attachment 44460
Keen's. The best! I worn Keen's H2 on my CP with injinji toe sox. No problems
 
Camino(s) past & future
Travel318
#20
Truer words couldn’t be spoken. Use Compeed only if you know what you’re doing or you’ll get infections.
Hi,

Compeed is the worst thing you could do on large blisters. Beware of that!

Either, when you continue walking, you will tear the skin off your feet when taking off your socks. Or you will suffer a severe infection (blood poisoning) as Compeed not only seals the blister but also the bacteria in it and while you leave Compeed on your feet you do not see how the infection develops.

An experienced hospitalero or a nurse can help you to treat bigger blisters. They open it with a sterile injection needle (which you can buy in a Pharmacy), let the water flow out and inject some "betadine" (desinfectant, Iodid) instead, cover the blister loosely with gaze and let it dry overnight.

Best is to prevent blisters. When you feel, that some part of your shoe is rubbing on your skin, stop immediately and cover the skin with "tape" ( e. g. Leukotape, textile and a bit flexible - not the grey plastic stuff you see on the photo above).

BC
Alexandra
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
#21
I think compeed is an excellent product to help avoid blisters, but once you have them, it shouldn’t be used as a cover.
 

davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#23
I think compeed is an excellent product to help avoid blisters, but once you have them, it shouldn’t be used as a cover.
Many share a misunderstanding and confusion about Compeed and other brands of hydrogel coverings, like Spenco's Second Skin. They were designed to be used as a cover for newly treated blisters, whether the blister is deroofed, or the skin is still in place and the fluid is drained with an incision. I can understand why some have made the assumption that they are also/or for use to prevent blisters, but they are not meant for that application. They can be used for blister prevention, but in comparison to other shear force friction barriers, they have been shown to be less effective for that chore :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
#24
Many share a misunderstanding and confusion about Compeed and other brands of hydrogel coverings, like Spenco's Second Skin. They were designed to be used as a cover for newly treated blisters, whether the blister is deroofed, or the skin is still in place and the fluid is drained with an incision. I can understand why some have made the assumption that they are also/or for use to prevent blisters, but they are not meant for that application. They can be used for blister prevention, but in comparison to other shear force friction barriers, they have been shown to be less effective for that chore :)
Having used compeed many times on hot spots, and never having experienced an actual blister, I’m most likely unqualified to speak on the subject of treating blisters. I hope my experience does not expand on the subject. :p
 
#25
Good luck. I thought I had bought the most comfortable hiking boots EVER, walked in them every day before I started the Camino, but after two days, my feet looked like this (see photo below). I'd spent a lot of money on the boots and refused to give them up. But my feet got worse and worse, so finally, I sucked it up and bought the new most comfortable shoes of my life (see photo below) and gave my blister causing boots to the woman at the post office for her daughter! The Keane sandals were fantastic and so comfortable, except I had to stop every so often to get the pebbles out :)
View attachment 44459 View attachment 44460
You are in trouble. Go to a good sports snd get psir trekking shors ot boots and dump old sandals
 

davebugg

DustOff: "When I have your wounded."
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#26
Having used compeed many times on hot spots, and never having experienced an actual blister, I’m most likely unqualified to speak on the subject of treating blisters. I hope my experience does not expand on the subject. :p
With your diligence in catching the hotspots, I doubt you'll need to worry much :) :cool:
 
#27
Read Ray Jardines Book Beyond Backpacking particularly the chapter on footwear. Ray is a pilot, endurance kayaker and long distance hiker of the three major US trail and many more. Rarely goes near boots; like me. He carries fabric boots for kicking steps in snow, otherwise it is a running shoe, or now a trail/approach shoe. Running shoe manufactures spend many more millions on research and development than boot manufacturers. Sorry I guess the shoe versus boots debate has been done.
 
Camino(s) past & future
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
#28
Compeed was designed NOT to prevent blisters but to COVER blisters THAT HAVE BROKEN.
That is what Compeed is advertised for! But my experience showed that Compeed is obviously not designed for the camino, i. e. walking longer distances over several days with blisters remaining covered.

2007 I used Compeed on a large blister on my heel ending up with ripping most of my skin off my heel (more than a 2-Euro-Coin-size). I have seen pilgrims losing their toe-nails after using compeed on those little nasty blisters you sometimes get on the back of your toes. My sister had a colleague at work who used compeed on an infected blister, ending up in hospital with blood poisoning.
This year I had a fellow chinese pilgrim who had covered her broken blister with compeed and suffered a severe infection from that which had to be treated by a nurse. Fortunately the betadine did ist work over night and she was able to continue walking the next day.

I am sure, other members of this Forum can contribute more stories like these!

BC
Alexandra
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#29
@Jury taylor if the blisters break, don't let them go untreated. We had one forum member who was so determined to keep walking in spite of blisters her feet became deeply infected and she developed blood poisoning. She had to spend days in hospital and abandon all thought of walking. Our member @David, who does first aid on the camino, will tell similar stories of people he has ferried to hospital.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - central from Oporto (2018 - planned)
#30
When my son was being treated at the podiatry clinic in Astorga (see above response #18), the people running the clinic were definitely NOT fans of Compeed as a blister treatment approach. They didn't like the way it put extra pressure on the blister when you walk. What they did for my sons worst blisters (after the usual draining and bathing in antiseptics), if I remember correctly, was create a custom padding for the interior of his shoes that was designed to go *around* where his blisters were with a hole where the blister itself was. This was to reduce the pressure on the blister spot.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#31
designed to go *around* where his blisters were with a hole where the blister itself was
That is the moleskin technique. Compeed is a wet wound technology. Its gel absorbs the fluid from the blister. As the gel expands, it cushions the blister, but repeated steps can cause pain. If the source of the friction still exists, a second blister can form at the same spot. Compeed can help to prevent this additional friction. Compeed has a very strong adhesive to prevent it from falling off prematurely. That adhesive can remove good skin if the bandage is removed before it falls off naturally. The accompanying instructions say not to remove it. Hiking can cause extra movement of the Compeed so that it begins to fall off early, leaving you with the choice of removing the old bandage carefully, or securing the edges with another Compeed or tape. I think Compeed is designed primarily for someone with new shoes that do not fit! While it is used primarily by pilgrims with blisters, it is a bit under-designed for the stress of 30,000 daily steps; the very strong adhesive is really not strong enough.

The American product sold by Johnson & Johnson has weaker adhesive, so you can change it several times a day without removing all the good skin around the blister! I suggest doing that even with Compeed. Once it begins to fall off, carefully remove it using isopropyl alcohol if necessary. The alcohol will help dissolve both the gel and the adhesive.

Prevent blisters with a lubricant applied several times a day. I like SportSlick and 2Toms silicone roll on.
 

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