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This year I've become serious about biking and racing and ride at least 5 days a week -- dropped 15 lbs and have done pretty well in the early races. Today when I started I noticed some discomfort on my left ass crease but after 20 minutes of warming up and shifting around managed to forget about it. After my shower I decided to check it out and assume I have started what would be called a saddle sore. Irritated skin sort of welted up but not oozing or really broken skin -- discolored though. While I'm no pro racer and my career far from relies on riding it would be a huge set back mentally and physically if I have to give up what I have going. Can anyone tell me what the best mode of action is to heal this, stop this, and continue riding??? I am still able to ride without question, just don't want it to get out of hand. I'm wondering if neosporing and tegaderm is OK vs. gold-bond or anti-fungal powder and keeping it dry??? Race this weekend and century coming up in a month or 2 so need to nip this in the bud asap.:(
 

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I've only had a few serious saddle sores, and each time I've stayed out of the saddle until the tissue healed a bit. That doesn't seem to be an option for you right now and I don't claim to have good advice about getting over the sore. I can, however, offer a suggestion about avoiding the sores in the first place. I noticed that the last two times I experienced a saddle sore were right after returning from plane flights which required that I remove my saddle to fit in my bike box. Apparently, I wasn't setting my saddle in exactly the same set up that I was accustomed to and the result was a saddle sore. Making proper adjustments has always solved the problem in the past. Adjustments aside, you may find relief from chamois cream. Good Luck.
 

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I'm still not clear on whether you have a saddle sore or another irritation.
"Irritated skin sort of welted up but not oozing or really broken skin -- discolored though."

A saddle sore will be a like a zit that feels like it's trying to inflame into the skin surface instead of pop out. It will be a bit red and domed on the skin surface. If you continue to ride on it, it's like jabbing at a zit on your cheekbone with you thumb for a couple hours. It turns from a simple zit to a welt. The problem with topical treatments is that a true saddle sore is too far beneath the skin for them to have any affect. Creams and powders do well for preventing them, but not so well for treating them. Unless you can complete all your training rides while pedaling standing up, you simply must not ride until it heals. The tough part is telling just when it has healed to the point where it won't simply pop up again after 15 minutes of sadde time. If you just discovered it, and it's still small, a couple days at least. If you discovered it and rode on it anyways and it got bigger, then maybe a full week is the time it will take.

Some people are more suseptible to them than others, even though they follow the same cleaning and sanitary practices. Sometimes it's switching the saddle or the position. Sometimes it's simply a too-long ride on a too-hot day with too much in-the-saddle pedaling. Sometimes it's ill-fitting chamois. Sometimes it's an infected hair. I found a pubic hair snared into the fabric of my chamois. The chamois has all these small holes, perforations in the fabric, probably for ventilation. While pedaling, a pubic hair can worm it's way into the hole, get stuck, then when you're pedaling you're constantly pulling on the hair. Bingo, it turns into a sore.

The single best and safest way to deal with it is to stay off the saddle until it heals on it's own. Three days won't kill you. It won't shatter your training schedule. If you love riding, it takes discipline and patience to not ride especially if you feel great otherwise. But the consequences of riding on a sore will keep you off the bike for a MUCH longer time. Just ask Oscar Frierer.
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=news/2005/aug05/aug10news
Freire out of Vuelta & world's

World champion Oscar Freire looks extremely unlikely to ride the Vuelta a España (August 27-September 18) and the world championships (Madrid, Spain, September 21-25) as he has only just been pronounced fit to ride again after an operation earlier this year. Freire was operated on in June to fix an injury to his saddle area that was making it all but impossible for his to sit on a bike, but the surgery has taken an unexpectedly long time to heal, leaving him unable to train in the meantime.

"If [Freire] sat on a saddle it felt like he was sitting on sharp stones," team manager Erik Breukink told the ANP news agency.

Freire was examined by doctors in Amstelveen yesterday and was pronounced sufficiently healed to be able to resume training. "But it is impossible for him to ride the Vuelta," said Breukink, who added that he did not think it would be possible for Freire to ride in enough races to be ready for the world championships.

Freire himself has also ruled out an appearance at the world's. "I'm still unable to train and it will be impossible for me to go to Madrid," he told Spanish sports newspaper AS. "I'm really annoyed to be missing out because it was a great opportunity for me. I'm sure a lot of people would have come to see me riding at home."

The Spaniard, who was expected to defend his third world championship on his home roads, explained that his injury problems are not yet over. "The wound has healed but the problem is with the bone," he said. "It is a very delicate area, with a lot of nerve connections and tendons. When I support the weight of my body on the saddle I get a lot of pain."
 

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I use hydrogen peroxide.

I don't get many, but when I do it heals them pretty quickly for me.

A few tips for prevention.

A product like Body Glide to reduce friction.
Get out of my bike shorts quickly after rides.
Wash shorts in hot water and dry, chamois out, in the sun.
When my wife gets a lot of them she replaces her saddle and they stop for a few years.
 

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Something I just figured out the last year or so......

I have never had a saddle sore problem. I had them start up late last summer, and after very little mileage this spring, they were threatening again.
I've just figured out the culprit: They happen in cooler weather, when I wear a pair of tights over my cycling shorts. It started last summer, since that's when I started commuting to work. It's generally cool enough here that if I'm riding to work at 0645, I wear tights over the shorts. I don't have any tights with a chamois. I'm pretty sure that the slight movement of the shorts and tights causes areas of friction, and gives me sores.

So if you live in a cool area and wear tights over shorts, it's something to think about.
 

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it was said above but i'll repeat it to stress it.

As soon as you're done lose the shorts.
if you want to eat before hitting the shower (i'd recommend it)
take a damp washcloth and give your rear a little quick wash.

i just ride through the pain of them. I ride my bike every day so giving it a rest would mean i'm out of town. My week ski trip early this month came at the right time. It was hurting pretty good to sit on the saddle.
 

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Eyestrain said:
This thread is useless without pictures.
Pay attention. There'll be a test after. The pic shows one that's very advanced. But with the red skin on the outside or "areola" border is pretty much what you can look forward to dealing with.
 

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"Cypress Gardens" Fl.
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....man, i've had some bad saddle sores myself

To me it's a necessary evil sometimes. I've had 'em so bad it was like sitting on a lit cigarette midway thru a 40 mile ride. Since you cant take time off the bike, I recommend a good hot shower, thoroughly cleansing the effected area, and then going to bed naked to allow maximum healing air do it's work without being confined in underwear. The next day apply a liberal amount of a good ointment to the chamoise of your bike shorts, something like Chamoise butter. "A & D ointment" with zinc oxide, or my personal favorite "Bag Balm". Bag Balm is cheap and effective and works great, although a bit messy. You can get it at Wal-Mart in the pet products section. Comes in a green can and is made for inflamed teets on cows. You wont go wrong.
 

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pop them if it's possible.
It's the only course of action that works for me. I use a mirror, some alcohol and a candle-sterilized #11 X-Acto knife blade. A few hours later, I'm good to go.
 

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More gross?

Nothing gross about draining a BOIL. As a matter of fact, better that than waiting until it develops into a CARBUNCLE, which - if left untreated - could be the initiator of chronic FURUNCULOSIS. I have high-res JPEGs and am prepared to use them. ;)
 

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Just a few tips:

1)use chamois butt'r or that assos stuff.Use it on the chamois in your riding shorts and on the chaffed area(or area that will get chaffed).

2)After your ride DON'T stay in your riding shorts long.Take a shower and clean the area with soap.It isn't a bad idea to clean it with rubbing alchohol after the shower.

3)Don't pick at it.Leave it alone and it will most likely heal.

I have had a few saddle sores and have been able to ride through them using Chamois butt'r to keep the area lubed so it lessens the friction.
 

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Sir Lance-a-boil

Dave_Stohler said:
Somebody, please delete this thread before it get even more gross!!!
I had one get to about the size of a big grape before I had to play Dr. 90210 on myself.
I first sat/squatted in a large cooking pot full of very warm espson salt water. I had to be careful to only submerge the affected area. If you can picture it, I'm kind of centered on the rim of the pot, off to one side so my nuggets don't get boiled. I then got an exacto knife, gauze, some Q-tips, and a mirror and went to work. It turns out the toilet seat has pretty good ergonomics for this naked-from-the-waist-down operation.
Because the boil was kind of half above and half below the skin surface, I had to slice a pretty deep furrow into my skin. I was suprised at how tough the skin was to cut. The blade opened it up with a tearing velcro sound.
As gory as it sounds, I'm pretty sure it healed more thoroughly and more quickly than if I either kept riding on it, or waited for it to totally shrink/dry up on it's own.
 

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Scrub saddle area w/ lufa

A good lufa sponge helps me avoid sores on my area. I strongly recommend them.

As for how to treat an existing sore - I'm no expert, but I do tend to get an occasional cyst on my back. Someone once told me to make sure to drink plenty of water. I'm not sure if this is a remedy, but it's easier than stabbing yer cheek w/ an xacto blade.
 

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woahh... that was thorough. i've got one on my sack, right by may 'taint. so far there's no pain whatsoever. hope i don't have to do some DIY surgery. i'm not very fond of the idea of cutting my scrotum :eek:


Jesse D Smith said:
I had one get to about the size of a big grape before I had to play Dr. 90210 on myself.
I first sat/squatted in a large cooking pot full of very warm espson salt water. I had to be careful to only submerge the affected area. If you can picture it, I'm kind of centered on the rim of the pot, off to one side so my nuggets don't get boiled. I then got an exacto knife, gauze, some Q-tips, and a mirror and went to work. It turns out the toilet seat has pretty good ergonomics for this naked-from-the-waist-down operation.
Because the boil was kind of half above and half below the skin surface, I had to slice a pretty deep furrow into my skin. I was suprised at how tough the skin was to cut. The blade opened it up with a tearing velcro sound.
As gory as it sounds, I'm pretty sure it healed more thoroughly and more quickly than if I either kept riding on it, or waited for it to totally shrink/dry up on it's own.
 

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Guys with higher testosterone levels are more prone to acne and other skin infections, so if you are an early balding guy or have more zits on your back than you would like you're out of luck. It's important to get on the bike CLEAN, bacteria like a moist, warm environment, so wash the area with something anti-septic before a ride and use chamois creme to keep irritation at bay.
 
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