Raynaud’s disease is associated with cold fingers or toes. Vasospasm, or the constricting of the blood vessels, occurs in response to cold or stress. When the blood vessels constrict, your fingers may turn cold. You may also see color changes in your skin. Raynaud’s disease is most commonly seen in women.
There are two forms–primary and secondary. The primary form is called Raynaud’s disease, and it is present regardless of precipitating factors.
The secondary form, Raynaud’s phenomenon, is often associated with another underlying medical condition such as a connective tissue disease, arterial disease, or carpal tunnel. Identifying this other underlying cause is critical to treatment.
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (embed link to CTS)
How Can Hand Therapy Help?
- Treating primary Raynaud’s involves education, lifestyle changes, and avoiding precipitating factors. Wearing gloves and avoiding triggers can keep your symptoms at bay. If this doesn’t work, your doctor may consider medication.
- With Secondary Raynaud’s, the underlying cause must be identified and treated. Discovering the cause may be difficult or complicated, so wearing gloves and avoiding triggers can help keep symptoms to a minimum.
For more information check out the American College of Rheumatology.