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What to do If you stand on a sea urchin in Croatia

sea urchin in Croatia

The presence of sea urchins in Croatia’s crystal clear sea can sometimes turn a blissful swim into a painful experience.

Standing on a sea urchin can cause sharp spines to puncture your skin, leading to pain and potential complications. Here’s a guide on what to do if you find yourself in this prickly situation.

Immediate steps to take include getting out of the sea as soon as possible so you avoid pressing more spines into your foot.

Then, inspect the wound and assess the number of spines embedded in your skin. Sea urchin spines are fragile and can easily break, so handle the area gently.

sea urchin in Croatia

Removing the Spines

Next, clean the affected area, rinse the wound with seawater. Avoid using fresh water initially, as it can cause the spines to become more brittle.

Use Tweezers for Removal

If the spines are visible and protruding, carefully remove them with sterilised tweezers. Be cautious not to break the spines further.

Soak in Vinegar

Soak the affected area in vinegar for 30 to 60 minutes. Vinegar helps dissolve the calcium-based spines, making them easier to remove and reducing the risk of infection. 

If spines are deeply embedded, sterilise a needle and gently try to lift the spines out. Be very careful not to push them further in.


After removing as many spines as possible, clean the wound with an antiseptic solution to prevent infection. Then you should monitor for signs of infection.

Keep an eye on such things as redness, swelling, increased pain, or pus. If any of these occur, seek medical attention promptly.

sea urchin in Croatia

Spines left in can sometimes cause infection or other complications so if you are unable to remove all the spines, you can see a doctor.

Standing on a sea urchin can be a painful experience, but with the right steps, you can minimise the damage and prevent complications.

Quick and careful action is key to dealing with sea urchin injuries. Always remember to seek medical help if you’re unable to remove the spines or if you notice signs of infection.

With these precautions, you can continue to enjoy the beautiful Croatian coast without worry.

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