After my inadequate blister protection for the race on Saturday, I took off my socks to find the worst blood blisters I’ve ever had.  Don’t worry, I’m not going to show you any gross pictures.   I promise.

They looked something like Sarah’s blisters, only I had them on both feet and mine were darker and puffier.  In the past, I’ve dealt with blisters by simply covering them with bandaids and moleskin, because most of the time they go away on their own after a few days, but these were so big that I realized I wouldn’t be able to wear any shoes, much less run, without significant discomfort.  So…I realized it was time to perform a little surgery.  Outpatient, of course ;)

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor any way involved in the medical field; all my knowledge comes from Google and some common sense.

Mike and I have a stockpile of medical supplies in a big filing box because we’re Doomsday preppers we like to be prepared.  So I set about gathering needles, a lighter, alcohol prep pads, gauze, and bandaids.


The most important thing about popping a blister is keeping the wound as sterile as possible, to prevent infection.  To that end, I started out by sterilizing the needle by holding it with a pair of tweezers and rotating it over an open flame for a few seconds.  I used an alcohol pad to wipe off the soot or whatever and sterilize it further.  I cleaned the blistered areas thoroughly with additional alcohol pads.  And then mentally prepared myself.

To my surprise, the needle didn’t hurt at all! I was careful to poke the blister at an angle to just pierce the skin, not go in perpendicular to the foot and damage healthy tissue underneath.  After poking, I covered the wound with a gauze pad to let it drain.  My blisters were big, so I had to poke each one 4-5 times in separate places to get it to drain all the way.

Afterwards, I applied antibiotic ointment and taped some gauze in place, and switched out the gauze for a bandaid after a few hours.  Done.


The surgery station


Obviously watching Grey’s Anatomy for tips while I go

I was very happy with the result afterwards because the blisters didn’t hurt at all and they didn’t impede me from running and doing other important activities like wearing shoes.

Do you ever get blisters from running? What do you do to treat them?


4 thoughts on ““Surgery”

  1. I’m very blister-prone, and for me, if I’m doing a long run, I absolutely HAVE to wear “wright socks”. They have two thin layers of material and since wearing them, I have yet to have a blister on a run when I wear those – except on the tips of my toes, but I don’t know if those are avoidable.

    1. Dawn H.

      Thanks for your comment Lauren! I was so excited to try wright socks out, with their blister free guarantee, but I found that they didn’t protect my feet from the blood blisters :( I think it’s because my feet are wide and tend to rub against my shoes more than most.

  2. I swear by Nike dri-fit elite cushioned quarter socks – I’ve never had a blister whilst wearing them, even when doing marathons in the rain. I also found that when I moved up from doing 10Ks to 10 mile, half marathon and marathon races I needed to buy shoes that were much larger than my usual shoes. (I wear a UK size 6 normally, I can wear a size 6.5-7 for short runs, but for longer races, I wear a UK 7.5!!!)

    In the UK we have compeed blister plasters – I’m not sure of the same brand is available where you are, but they are amazing at protecting blistered skin and helping it to heal.

    1. Dawn H.

      Ah, I’ll have to look into those socks! I’m the same as you – I need to buy my shoes at least 1 size bigger to prevent black toenails and blisters. I might try moving another half size up, thanks for the idea. I’ve tried the Bandaids for blisters, which apparently have the compeed pads as well; they definitely helped quite a bit, but my difficulty was getting them to stick to my feet for longer than an hour…

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