Tips from Patients
|What is Raynaud's?
Photos of Attacks
Disease vs. Phenomenon
With Other Diseases
Raynaud's of the Nipples
|Raynaud's of the Lungs
Doubles Risk of Heart Problems
Importance of Controlling
Other Ways Scleroderma Can Affect Hands
Raynaud's in Children
Raynaud's is a vascular disorder commonly found in sclerodema. It is an extreme spasm of blood vessels in response to cold or stress.
How do you pronounce "Raynaud's"? Raynard, Raynod, Raynoze, RAYnadds, Raynaws, Raynowds, RAYnoz, Rayners, RP, or Raywhatsit? ISN's Sclero Forums discussion.
Raynaud Phenomenon. Raynaud phenomenon manifests as recurrent vasospasm of the fingers and toes and usually occurs in response to stress or cold exposure. Medscape.
Most Raynaud's attacks are not this visible. Usually attacks cause the skin to go dead white. However, attacks that incur blue fingers are much more dramatic and photogenic. In between attacks, the hands look normal.
Raynaud's occurs in 3 to 5% of the general population; however, more than 80% of patients with Raynaud's do not have a connective tissue disease or other serious illness. Scleroderma: Symptoms and Complications. University of Maryland Medical Center.
When Raynaud's appears by itself, without any other medical condition, it is called Raynaud's Disease. When it appears along with autoimmune diseases such as Scleroderma, Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, and Rheumatoid Arthritis, it is called Raynaud's Phenomenon (or, Secondary Raynaud's.)
In primary Raynaud's, the blood vessels return to normal afterwards. However, in Raynaud's with Scleroderma there may be blood vessel scarring which can make medication ineffective.Digital (Finger) Ulcers are caused by the lack of oxygen to skin cells.
Just 5 to 20 percent of people with Raynaud's phenomenon subsequently develop scleroderma, but about 90 percent of scleroderma patients experience this extreme cold sensitivity with red/blue flashes in their hands and feet as a primary manifestation of their disease. What Causes Raynaud's? National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. NIH.
Systemic sclerosis without antinuclear antibodies (ANA) or Raynaud's phenomenon (RP): a multicentre study in the prospective EULAR Scleroderma Trials and Research (EUSTAR) database. Prospective studies are needed to elucidate the clinical presentation, evolution and outcome of such patients. PubMed, Rheumatology, 2013 Mar;52(3):560-7. (Also see What is Scleroderma? and Antibodies in Systemic Scleroderma)
Thumb Involvement in Raynaud's Phenomenon as an Indicator of Underlying Connective Tissue Disease. Thumb involvement is one of a number of clinical indicators that should alert the clinician to the possibility of an underlying connective tissue disease/disorder. JRheum. March 1, 2010.
Vascular Disease and Systemic Scleroderma. Any condition that affects the vascular system, all of in part, is considered a vascular disease. ISN.
Vascular in Scleroderma
Types in Scleroderma
In Other CTDs
The association of antiphospholipid antibodies (APLA) with cardiopulmonary manifestations of systemic sclerosis. APLA is associated with pulmonary arterial hypertension (PH), interstitial lung disease, Raynaud's phenomenon and digital ulcers, so endothelial abnormalities and small vessel thrombosis may be important in the pathogenesis of these disease features. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol, 2014 Feb 24. (Also see Antiphospholipid Syndrome, Causes of Pulmonary Hypertension , and Digital Ulcers)
Raynaud's can affect the nipples of breastfeeding mothers, causing severe pain.
Raynaud's Phenomenon of the Nipple Associated with Labetalol Use. Precipitants for Raynaud's phenomenon of the nipple are known to be cold temperatures, caffeine, and emotional stress. J Hum Lact, February 2013 vol. 29 no. 1 17-19.
Raynaud's may also affect the tip of the nose, earlobes, cheeks, chin, or lungs. Some people with scleroderma and Raynaud's experience coughing attacks when breathing cold air or drinking/eating cold liquids and foods. The coughing may or may not be caused by pulmonary vasospasms caused by exposure to cold.
A 1998 study indicated that people who have Raynaud's may have double the risk of coronary artery disease and stroke. "Hopkins: Is Raynaud's a Predictor of Heart Disease?" by Fredrick M. Wigley, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Director of Molecular and Clinical Rheumatology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, August 19, 1998, Aetna InteliHealth.
Coronary Artery Disease HeartPoint Gallery
Scleroderma and Raynaud's can in some instances become so severe as to require amputation of fingers and/or toes, so keeping "aggressively warm" plus promptly treating all Raynaud's attacks is essential for all Scleroderma patients. As Raynaud's progresses, slight drops in temperature may trigger it with longer duration of the attacks.
Additionally, recent research indicates that Raynaud's might be part of how the disease process advances in Scleroderma, due to the oxygen deprivation caused by Raynaud's spurring an abnormal chemical reaction which produces oxygen radicals. Therefore, taking great precautions to prevent Raynaud's attacks could be of paramount importance for Scleroderma patients.
Raynaud's isn't the only way in which Scleroderma can affect the hands. Hand involvement may include skin tightening and hardening, finger contractures, Telangiectasia, Calcinosis, and arthritis. (Also see Scleroderma Skin Involvement, Skeletal Involvement, Telangiectasia, and Calcinosis)
Pediatric Raynaud Phenomenon. The overall prevalence of Raynaud's in 12-15 year olds was 14.9%. Medscape.
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