1st BF injury - frostbite

Discussion in 'Health, Nutrition, Injuries & Medical Conditions' started by rickwhitelaw, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. Barefooting Bob

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    Wow, those are some seriously

    Wow, those are some seriously black toes. Even my freezing jaunts last year never produced anything even close to that. Was the ground wet to go along with the snow, or was there snow melt or rock salt put down on the areas you ran through.

    Heal up my friend.
     
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  2. Barefoot Dama

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    Oh man, ouch, ouch,

    Oh man, ouch, ouch, ouch.

    Those look very painful! are your feet feeling better? I hope so.
     

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  3. Barefoot Gentile

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    Wow!  those are serious!  

    Wow! those are serious!



    Just for the record the blisters that TJ posted were not actually frostbite, I thought it was. They were really bad friction blisters caused by running on icey roads with foot slippage.
     
  4. rickwhitelaw

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    Hey everyone, thanks for all

    Hey everyone, thanks for all the get well wishes. Here's an update. I went to a clinic and the doc cleaned out the blisters and bandaged my toes. I got a big shot of antibiotics in the butt. Three days later I went back and he cut more dead skin off and said things looked pretty good. I should be running again soon, but with shoes on for awhile.

    @Bob. I think it was day 3 more than day 2 that caused damage. Day 2 was a dry surface and not a very long distance. I'm pretty sure there was no salt on the road. Day 3 I just went too far on the snowpack. I was having too much fun.

    I felt a little better when I saw Barefoot Rick's pictures (only because it can happen to an expert too). Those are nasty.

    Lesson learned, and if I ever meet up with any of you, I buy the first round for my rookie move.

    Rick W.
     
  5. Barefooting Bob

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     Lesson learned, and if I

    Lesson learned, and if I ever meet up with any of you, I buy the first round for my rookie move.

    Rick W.

    Your on!!!!!
     
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  6. barefootmetalman

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    I know this thread is kinda old, but I didn't want to start a new one. Anyway, I was dumb today and now have frostbite. I went out for a short barefoot run and it was about 16F or so with single digit wind chill (from what I thought I heard on the radio, but my wife said it was only like 8-10F this morning). Anyway, started off on the roads on an Airforce base and was gonna go to their rubberized running path (2 mile "loop"), but when I got there, it was covered with frost and snow in a lot of places, so after running about 25 meters or so, I decided it was too cold to be on ice/snow and decided to run the roads instead. At that point, everything felt great...not pushing it too hard for a change (and still had an 8:40 something/mile overall pace) and feeling really light. When I got to the distant end of the road, I decided to run back on the concrete walking path/sidewalk and didn't get too far before I saw a patch of snow/ice, but it was only about 1/2-1" deep and only about 30ft long, so I ran through it and kept running. Not to far again, there was more snow/ice but maybe only about 20ft long, so I kept going. It kept repeating...some decent stretches without snow/ice and then some short patches of snow/ice. Whenever I ran through the snow, I would feel some stinging from the cold, but it wasn't too bad. I did lose a little bit of feeling on my toes, but kept curling them to make sure I could still do that and feel the ground with them. I have lost a little feeling in my toes before on cold runs, but it was never a problem and this run didn't feel too much different other than the stinging cold going through the snow. I think I may have had "frostnip" in the past years since upon warming, they stung/hurt pretty good, but I never got blisters (surface skin would peel a little bit after, but it wasn't anything major). Anyway, when I finally got done (3.4 miles at 29:30), I went inside the base gym and my feet felt fine although still a little numb. Got to my car and put the heat on while driving to my office and went to shower. Everything felt fine until the shower...and that's when the burning started (which I kinda expected). Anyway, it was hurting pretty bad for the first few hours of work and then started feeling better, but still with some pain. Figured my feet were a little swollen and pushing on my boots. I eventually took my boots/socks off to check my feet and noticed blisters! That was a big downer cuz I was already reading info online about frostbite/frostnip and that was one of the big differentiating factors. Anyway, planning on trying to get to the Dr. tomorrow to have my feet looked at. They don't bother me too much right now unless I put pressure on the blisters or stretch the skin by walking on them. If I walk with my toes extended off the ground...no real pain at all, but I can't do that at work since I have to wear my boots. Anyway, anyone who has experience with "mild" frostbite...does the dr. really do much? Should I worry about it since it's not causing too much pain? How long is the recovery normally? The weather is supposed to be really nice come Sunday and next week and I want to try to run in the nicer weather and esp want to get some Slackline time in, but walking on a 1" webbing with blisters on my toes doesn't sound pleasant.
    Thank You.

    Frank

    BTW, included pics since I know how much they are appreciated. On the pics showing the bottom of my feet. They are a little dirty since I didn't want to scrub them too hard, but they have been washed. The only part on the bottom of my feet that bothers is on the pads of the center toes. The "discoloration" on my big toe and ball of foot is mostly dirt and from the flash of the camera I think. I was just kinda touching my toes and stuff right now and I think I do have a small blister on my left big toe on the inside/top mostly on the side but maybe a little on the bottom. Kinda weird that my little "pinky" toes are completely fine. Also, one more question...I've notice this on other cold weather runs, but it seems like my left foot always gets colder than my right. Anyone else notice one side colder than the other or is it just me?


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. rickwhitelaw

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    Frank, sorry this happened. Painful to hear and then see the pictures. You ought to re post in a new thread. Get to a doc, your main concern will be infection when the blisters open up.
     
  8. rickwhitelaw

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    Re posting the picture when my blisters opened up after a run. (tried making the picture bigger, but couldn't)

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Ahcuah

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    Just be aware that being able to curl your toes doesn't say anything about their warmth. Most of those muscles (as far as I understand) are farther up your leg. For instance, look at the backs of your hands. Those tendons that operate your fingers connect to muscles in your arms--the feet/legs are structured similarly.

    Now, curling is still good, because it does help pull blood down into your feet. I'm just saying that it's not a good indicator.

    You also need to be careful about thinking you can feel things. There are all sorts of feedback that are integrated together, and when one is not working your brain still pretends that it is. For instance, if you foot is numb and you touch it with a finger, the finger feedback will also convince you that your foot is feeling it. With a numb foot, even the pressure of weight when transmitted up can make you think the foot is really feeling something.

    A somewhat better test is to close your eyes (otherwise even seeing your foot touching something can give you a false impression) and brush your foot across a surface. If you can still feel texture under those circumstances, then they are probably still ok. But if you cannot, then you need to seriously consider that your brain is playing tricks on you.
     
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  10. SillyC

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    Awww - sorry.

    I would say get to the doctor as well. The concern, as stated above, is infection once those puppies open.

    I had this happen once to me as well, after I got caught outside in a snowstorm. It was about 1/4 as bad as Gentile's pics above, so I only needed to take a day off of running, and I was able to keep my very small wounds clean with a regular band aid.

    But I've since been a bit less cavalier about running barefoot below 35 degrees. (I wear shoes.) The time I got frostbite was when it was a couple of degrees above freezing, but we got about a half inch of snow during the run.
     
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  11. Barefoot TJ

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    Rick, are those your pictures or Metalman's? It's hard to tell; they overlap the posts and the page. I didn't read the posts. Anyway, can you guys shrink those please. They are just way too big. Sorry, and thanks!
     
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  12. Ahcuah

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    I want to correct this/expand on it. There are two sets of muscles that clench your toes. The flexor brevis digitorum is located under the foot, and can get cold and stop working (thereby warning you). However, there is also the flexor longus digitorum, which is the one that it located in your calf and attached to the toes with a long tendon. As long as your calves are warm, you'll still be able to clench your toes. I wrote more about that in my blog entry for today, "The Toe Clench", http://ahcuah.wordpress.com/2013/01/09/the-toe-clench/
     
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  13. rickwhitelaw

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    Enjoyed the read Ahcuah. It might get more "exposure" in the winter challenge thread or a new thread. Good advice and great pictures. Inspired me to carefully try some more snow walking.
     
  14. rickwhitelaw

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    Metalman's. I'm looking forward to an update, hopefully good news.
     
  15. barefootmetalman

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    Sorry about that TJ. I wasn't sure how to shrink them and didn't realize they would be that big when I first posted them. Hope it's better now.
    Anyway, I did go to the Dr. and they just said yeah, it's frostbite, but nothing major. Wear non-restrictive footwear while at work till the blisters subside and learn my limits. Just basic info, then I paid them and left. Blisters are still there but small and no pain, so back in my boots at work.
     
  16. Barefoot TJ

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    No problemo, Metalman! Thanks for fixing that.
     
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  17. gypzyroze

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    Hey, I just had a similar thing happen. Played a couple points of Ultimate Frisbee in the snow around 10 degrees F and am trying to decide if I need to see a doctor. I have gained some but not all feeling back in my toes, have large blisters and slight swelling (although that could be from a different injury). Do you think you gained anything from your visit to the doctor and how was the healing process? One of my toes did turn a deep purple as it was warming back up.
     
  18. Tyler J L

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    I would try that. I live in Iowa so I know the cold Midwest temperatures are not that fun.
     
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  19. Tristan

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    Wow, hope things are ok and wish you a speedy recovery. I can't really give advice on doctor or not though I am just not familiar enough with what they can do vs the severity. Looks like metalman hasn't logged in here in over a year, but maybe he'll get a notification and chime back in.

    It's good to bring this up again though, there hasn't been a whole lot of talk yet this year or even last year on winter running and frostbite. I'm not familiar with 'Ultimate' Frisbee but I'm guessing it might not generate as much blood flow and warmth in the foot as running. I can run barefoot below freezing in the right conditions, but pretty much any other activity I have to wear shoes as my feet don't stay as warm as they would when I run. And even wearing shoes I need to wear ones that are less ventilated and water resistant. Some folks here can handle temperatures way below freezing but the rest of us need to realize that we need to find our limits and understand those limits are more complicated than just temperature... wind and wet/snow changes things a lot. And it's not just toughening up, frostbite can do some serious damage. I've recorded short run of 1/2 mile down to around zero F before, but I've also had numb toes/feet in the 40's F it varies a lot! I've got a slight frost 'nip' before I found my limits, and even then things vary so much I've got frost nip maybe 3 times now at least. No blisters or turning purple I don't think (they were white though of course) and felt like a really bad rug burn for a couple days. Sorry I know that doesn't help you gypzy, but just a warning for others hopefully. Let us know what happens.
     
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  20. Barefoot TJ

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    I'm not a doctor, but please feel free to post pictures of the frostbite in our Ask the Docs forum. Heal well! :coldfeet:
     
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