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Persistent blister on heal
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Elizabeth Tracy
(mariposa) - M

Locale: Outside
Persistent blister on heal on 08/16/2011 15:50:06 MDT Print View


Fifteen years ago I ditched boots, switched to trail running shoes, and utterly stopped getting blisters on my feet. Ever.

Now, suddenly (this year and last) I am getting a persistent blister on the back of one of my heels. I think it's because I have a very narrow heel and I can't seem to keep the heel from sliding up and down along the shoe. (Although I've had these same model shoes for 4 years and can't understand why they only started presenting problems the last two.)

Till I can get new shoes, I'm wondering about fix-its for heel blisters. I have been putting double-thick moleskin or those donut-hole things over the vulnerable area and covering with tape (either medical tape or duct tape), then adding bodyglide on top of everything. But it doesn't stay in place for more than 30 minutes. The Blister Band-aids seem to be helping with the healing after I do develop a blister, and they stay in place relatively well, but they don't provide any padding.

Do I need a new kind of tape? (Can't afford leukotape.) Do I just need an absurdly large amount of tape, 6 inches of it instead of 4 inches? Should I try something else - e.g. Second Skin? I What else haven't I thought of?

Feet grateful in advance for your kind wisdom,

Edited by mariposa on 08/16/2011 15:52:37 MDT.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Persistent blister on heal on 08/16/2011 16:40:00 MDT Print View

New insoles maybe?

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Persistent blister on heal on 08/16/2011 16:41:45 MDT Print View

Go to a good drug store and buy a bottle of Tincture of Benzoin. That is a slightly sticky alcohol-based brown liquid, and you paint it on the affected skin areas with a Q-tip. Let that dry, and then other things won't slip against it so much. For example, socks won't slip, and tape will stay in place a lot longer.

Do this every day while you are in training, and the alcohol has the slight effect of toughening the skin as well. If you do all of this thoroughly, you might get the skin in shape so that you may not need to use tape during the trip.

The bad news: If you take the bottle to the trailhead with you, the liquid might leak and it makes a big mess.


Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: Persistent blister on heal on 08/16/2011 18:20:00 MDT Print View

I know you said you can't afford it but pre taping with Leukotape or Kinesio Tape could fix your problem. In the big picture a $12 roll of tape could last you a year or two isn't that expensive. It is probably cheaper in the long run than moleskin and/or bodyglide. I find Leukotape to last four or five days on the trail.

peter vacco

Locale: no. california
time to cough it up luv. on 08/16/2011 18:57:13 MDT Print View

you can't afford leuko tape. if you want to keep walking, you're about in a position that you can't afford Not to buy it.
there has got to be 12 dollars worth of slack somewhere in your budget. we're not (yet) in that financial disaster where things like this are real. not yet at least. soon enough we will be. but before that, buy some tape.
the $12 x 15 yd roll is 45" which is roughly 30 tapings = what ? that's 40 cents a tape job. ok, 50 cents including the ones you muck up.
you can afford it.

so, it's 12 bucks a roll. you can get it from vitality medical. and you can get that tincture of benzion along with it.

now... let's just say you soon have this super duper tape, and your benzion. the benzoin is spendy sticky stuff that will not want to spill.
the tape is not infinitely sticky. in fact, it's only sorta sticky. the magic of it's stick is in the longevity, not in any particularly tenacious heroic bonding. the benzoin helps it stick good over time. they work together. you need both.

this is what peter would do. (and does)
afford a 1oz nalgene plastic bottle too. make sure it is either clean and very very dry, or brand new.
water in the benzoin seems to allow it to consume the nalgene.
find some open cell foam about 1/2" thick.
cut your foam into a wedge shaped format about 6 to 8" long, by however tall it needs to be to slightly crown out the bottle when you roll it EXTREMELY tightly and shove it in there.
shove down alongside the foam something to let the air out, and slowly drip the benzion into your bottle.
now you have a bottle of benzion that will last you several weeks of walkng and will not spill if you knock it over inside your tent.

(i will be selling this rig soon enough, but it's not eff'n rocket science to make one)

coat you heel in the area you want, and above and below the zone.
unroll the tape a bit and don't sweat the corners.
when you tape the area, don't dwell a bunch on making one stripe of 1-1/2 tape do it all. aim a bit off to one side. the second strip will overlap and that will make it plenty plenty wide. go down below the heel and under the foot several inches.
do NOT let your foot bend over 90° when taping, because if you do, the tape will be wrinkeled, and you won't like that.
let the tape be a little bit under tension in service. it will creep in a few hours and be dead flat no wrinkles sweet.
you can leave it one several days at least. no big deal.
and if there is a blister, screw it, just benzoin and tape right over that puppy. the alcohol will kill and redness in a few hours.
benzoin heals.

so there. that ought to protect your heel area from any attack of your shoe. take a Very long look at the shoes too.

what changed in your foot ?
perhaps, you might do yourself a favor and lookup a thing called a "pump bump" because that's what i got, and i've had a bone just come storming out the back of my foot two years ago in the arctic. it was quite depressing. was like my body turned on me.
but with a bit of creative taping, plus some minor surgery and removal of heel paddig inside my boots, i was up and running again over 300 miles of ice and wet puke this summer.
so, a pump bump might be the villain, and they are all but functionally inoperable due to excessive recovery time.
or .. it might not be.

hope some of that might help.

peter v.

Nick Truax
(nicktruax) - F

Locale: SW Montana
peter v. and leukotape on 08/16/2011 21:08:17 MDT Print View

Yup, Peter V. is speaking truth here.

Elizabeth Tracy
(mariposa) - M

Locale: Outside
Thanks on 08/17/2011 11:39:45 MDT Print View

Wow. Thanks much!
I'll report back after the next trip.
- Elizabeth

Link .
(annapurna) - MLife
Re: peter v. and leukotape on 08/17/2011 12:35:35 MDT Print View

$8.95 and free shipping

Eric Lundquist
(cobberman) - F - M

Locale: Northern Colorado
Re: time to cough it up luv. on 08/17/2011 12:59:33 MDT Print View

Peter do you got a picture of this setup? I'd very much like to ditch the glass container that my tincture came in.

peter vacco

Locale: no. california
oohhhh ... Anna ! on 08/17/2011 15:33:59 MDT Print View

oh dear .. $8.95 bookmark that spot !
yes !!

here you can see our world beating invention, easily equaling those of edison or marconi.
.. right ... (moving on now)

that is your std HDPE (it says) Nalgene bottle form REI. it's still got a load in it and weighs, for the UL folks who might opine that the mass of the cure matters, when a bone is coming thru the end of your foot ... 1.4 ohhh'zees

i tried a small pile of the roll-on thingies, and they universally sucked from the leakage standpoint. spray bottles seemed to be a disaster in the tent in the wanting, especially considering that it would be drifting directly onto some 500 odd dollars sleeping bag. Jerry Kubalinko, of sled pulling excellence, uses a bottle with a swab, and i just didn't buy into that, although he is DEAD SPOT ON in any other infinite number of details.

the foam comes from, as so many other wonderful things civilization has brought us .. McMaster Carr. it's 1/2" thick and they sell it as "this is what you want to line packing cases and such.." or close to that description. i bought it to line may leica slide projector cases. we suspect any type of very open-cell foam would do equally as well. for the not industrailly inclined, open-cell is Not what a ridge rest is. open-cell gets smaller if you smush it. closed cell does not so much at all. it can't. the cells are closed (really ?) and they contain air or whatever and this lets it give and cushion, but not smush. closed cell foam is like a wrestling mat.

you can put some huevos into rolling it, don;t be shy.benzoin bottle

Elizabeth Tracy
(mariposa) - M

Locale: Outside
It works. on 09/14/2011 16:19:38 MDT Print View


Preventative moleskin + tincture of benzoin + leukotape works.

Enough said.

Thank you from the bottom of my feet.

- Elizabeth