Treatment for chilblain consists mainly of rewarming the affected body part and
preventing infection if open sores are present. Do not rub snow or ice on the affected
a. Rewarm Affected Body Part.
(1) A soldier with chilblain on his ears, nose, or face should rewarm the
affected area by covering the area with his bare hand until the area is warm again.
Usually, the casualty can perform this rewarming without assistance.
(2) A soldier with chilblain affecting his hands (usually his fingertips) can
rewarm the affected body parts by opening his outer garments, putting his bare hands
under his armpits (right hand under left armpit, and so forth), and closing his clothing to prevent
additional loss of body heat.
(3) A soldier with chilblain affecting his feet (usually the toes) can rewarm
the affected body parts by having a fellow soldier open his outer garments, putting his
bare feet against the other soldier's body (usually the abdomen), and having the other
soldier close his clothing to prevent additional loss of body heat. The person warming
the casualty's feet must take measures to ensure that he does not become a cold injury
b. Dress Lesions. If skin lesions have developed, cover the lesions with a dry,
sterile dressing. Do not apply any ointment or grease to the lesions. The moisture in
the ointment or grease can cause additional injury to the casualty's skin as long as the
casualty is exposed to cool or cold temperatures.
c. Protect Affected Body Part. Protect the affected body part once it has been
rewarmed by taking appropriate protective measures (change wet socks, put on mittens
or face mask, and so forth).
d. Record Treatment. Record the casualty's signs and symptoms and the
treatment administered on a DD Form 1380, U.S. Field Medical Card. Attach the form
to the casualty's uniform if he is to be evacuated. If the casualty is not evacuated,
forward the Field Medical Card through the appropriate channels.
e. Refer to Medical Officer. Chilblain which is properly treated will usually not
require evacuation since there will be little or no loss of skin tissue. The casualty should
be seen by a medical officer, though, when the opportunity presents itself. The medical
officer will be able to determine if any tissue damage occurred which was not
observable at the time of the cold injury and will provide any additional treatment that is