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What Is The Science Behind A Blister by Jae Won Joh

I found this explanation about blisters and thought it was nice and simple like me.  It has simple diagrams to demonstrate what is happening when a blister occurs, so I would like to thank Jae, who is also known as the sleepy medical dork.

1) Skin’s made of many layers. LIKE AN ONION.

12) The cells in each layer are interconnected with each other.

23) And to the other layers.

34) Some force comes in and disrupts the layers, breaking the connections between two layers (usually the dermis and epidermis). WHAT?!?

4The force can come from many sources:
• Shear stress that breaks the connections (from new shoes, for instance).
• Heat stress that basically fries the proteins connecting the cells.
• Immune stress (some people unfortunately develop an immune response to the connecting proteins).
• etc
5) Fluids seep in because…well, there’s nothing to stop them; you’ve got a bigger cavity than normal, and nothing’s holding the cells together to provide resistance. FLOOOOOOOD!

56) Some inflammatory cells respond too, because they receive notice of the damage. This usually further exacerbates the pressure from the seepage, because now you’ve got cells and their proteins and all that in there too. Oh No!

67) Poops. You’ve got a blister. 🙁


(image from…)

Note: If the damage extends to nearby blood vessels, then there can be blood in the blister too.

Hope you enjoyed this post, the pretty pictures make it easy to understand.

Til next time


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