Socks should be changed at least daily and washed whenever the
Socks and other clothing soiled with dirt, grease, or salt from
perspiration will conduct heat more rapidly, thus affording less protection against the
(6) The insulated rubber combat boot. Ground forces personnel in cold
areas are equipped with the insulated rubber combat boot.
Frequent change of socks is important with this boot because the
increased sweating and retention of sweat can lead to trench foot.
Although sweating in this boot does not contribute to the loss of
insulation, it nevertheless leads to the softening of the soles of the feet by the retained
Damage to tissues, produced by walking, results in a loss of skin
from the soles of the feet which may require hospitalization.
Cold injury to feet can result even when wearing insulated boots.
These injuries usually result from inactivity and dependency of the
foot, as occurs with prolonged sitting or standing without frequent foot or leg movement.
The general lack of warning symptoms emphasizes the insidious nature of cold injury,
which unfortunately is overlooked by many troops and commanders.
The warning symptoms of frostbite may only be a tingling, stinging, or dull
aching sensation of the exposed part followed by numbness.
The skin may briefly appear red and then become pale or waxy white.
If freezing has occurred, the affected part may feel "like a block of wood."
TREATMENT OF COLD INJURIES
Treatment of cold injury depends upon the time elapsed after injury, the severity of the
injury, the presence of complications, and the area affected.
a. Treatment in Military Operations. In military operations, treatment is
influenced by the tactical situation, as well as by the facilities available for the
evacuation of casualties.