A collection of fluid underneath the top layer of skin (epidermis). One that is more than 5 mm in diameter with thin walls and is full of watery fluid is called a bulla or a bleb. There are many causes of blisters including burns, friction forces, and diseases of the skin. There are a number of types of blisters, including: {{}}Blood blister: a blister full of blood due to a pinch, bruise or repeated friction. Fever blister: a blister in the mouth or around it that causes pain, burning, or itching before bursting and crusting over. It is due to the herpes simplex virus which is latent (dormant in the body) and can be reawakened (reactivated) by such factors as stress, sunburn, or fever. Hence, it called a fever blister or a cold sore. Water blister: a blister with clear watery contents that is not purulent (does not contain pus) and is not sanguineous (does not contain blood). The word "blister" entered English in the 14th century. It came from the Middle Dutch "bluyster", blister and was a modification of the Old French "blostre" which meant a leprous nodule — a rise in the skin due to leprosy.
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1. A fluid-filled thin-walled structure under the epidermis or within the epidermis (subepidermal or intradermal). 2. To form a b. with heat or some other vesiculating agent.
- blood b. a b. containing blood; resulting from a pinch or crushing injury.
- fever b. colloquialism for herpes simplex of the lips.
- fly b. a cantharidal b. caused by discharge of a vesicating body fluid by certain beetles, particularly members of the family Meloidae which produce cantharidin, e.g., Lytta (Cantharis) vesicatoria, the notorious “Spanish fly”; noncantharidin vesicating fluid is produced by other beetles, such as rove beetles (family Staphylinidae), especially the genus Paederus, whose fluid, on contact with the skin, produces an intensely painful b..
- fracture b. superficial epidermolysis that occurs in association, most commonly, with fractures of the leg and ankle and forearm and wrist; etiology represents a combination of excessive swelling and torsional injury to the overlying soft tissues.
- sucking b. superficial bullous skin lesion on neonate arm probably resultant from vigorous prenatal sucking.

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blis·ter 'blis-tər n
1) a fluid-filled elevation of the epidermis compare water blister
2) an agent that causes blistering
blis·tery -t(ə-)rē adj
blister vb, blis·tered; blis·ter·ing -t(ə-)riŋ vi to become affected with blisters vt to raise a blister on

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a swelling containing watery fluid (serum) and sometimes also blood (blood blister) or pus, within or just beneath the skin. Blisters commonly develop as a result of unaccustomed friction on the hands or feet or at the site of a burn. Blisters may be treated with antiseptics and dressings. An unduly painful blister may be punctured with a sterile needle so that the fluid is released.

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blis·ter (blisґtər) [L. vesicula] 1. vesicle (def. 2). 2. bulla (def. 1).

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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