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Backpackinglight -SKILLS SHORT: Maceration and Immersion Foot Diseases


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As backpackers, we spend a lot of time thinking about and managing our feet. One problem that crops up a lot (especially for those of us who choose to utilize ultralight footwear, hike in damp or snowy environments, or both) is wet feet. Feet that get wet and stay wet can cause all kinds of nasty issues - starting with maceration (wrinkly, pale, soft skin) and progressing through to immersion foot diseases like trench foot, tropical immersion foot, and warm water immersion foot. 

In this SKILLS SHORT, Ryan and Andrew break down the causes, symptoms, and results of immersion foot diseases. After a fairly exhaustive and somewhat nasty primer (you’ll hear the phrase “sloughing skin” more than once) the guys discuss strategies to prevent and manage immersion foot diseases and their symptoms. The pod wraps up with a discussion on when you should get off the trail (blackened skin = big trouble), and Ryan shares some of his favorite resources and further reading on foot care. 

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