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Raynauds Or Ulcer?

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I have a few questions that I am hoping that someone can answer for me.


1. What cause ulcers on the fingers/toes with scleroderma?

2. Can you get ulcers anywhere on the body?

3. I sometimes get numbness in my toes, my rheumatologist says it is from the raynauds

if the numbness lasts for a long time, can it develop into an ulcer?

4. Can calcinosis cause ulcers?


Many thanks


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The skin on my hands and feet is so tight that I could bounce coins. As a result the skin can / will just splite open. Like a balloon that bursts because of to much air. And because I don't heal quickly , I worry about infections. So protection is very important. I guess I'd say that the tighter the skin is , has a lot to do with it. My hands and feet are numb too and have been since the start. (2 years ) From all the doctors I"ve seen they all say keep them warm, protect them , and moisturize.As far as any ulcers on my body ,I've never had one.


Hope you never have one either.


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I've found that when the Raynaud's hits, I'm not aware of the rubbing of my toes on shoes, rugs, etc. With the lack of blood flow, I develop an ulcer before I'm aware the problem as started. I'm back to the doctor tomorrow at which time I'm sure he'll throw up his hands and send me to yet another specialist. I going to ask him about a longer disability period this time. I need to get off my feet and resolve this problem. After four months of pain and sleepless nights, I'm at my lowest in tolerance and threshold. I need to resolve this and apparently things on the toe are not looking that attractive. I've learned not to be scared anymore though. There are times I break down from the pain and stress of keeping work obligations, but my friends make me see laughter and conversation throughout those tough times.



It is what it is...........

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Something has been bothering me in this forum about the ulcer discussions. I see various people referring to treatments like Heat, Nitroglycerin Cream, ACE inhibitors, Viagra, etc. The main thing they seem to have in common is that they don't cost too much. Viagra seems to be the most expensive one on the list.


There are more expensive treatments like Bosentan that are not only supposed to work for ulcers but are supposed to help with a number of other SSc symptoms as well. Are lots of you on these more expensive medications, and I am just not hearing about it. Or is my sneaking suspicion correct and people are losing fingers and toes because the insurance industry is cheap! :glare:

keep on smiling



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Hello, Celia. You have asked some good questions which have in turn prompted some other good ones. I am including the links for our medical pages on Calcinosis and Digital Ulcers for you to read. These conditions are different.

Calcinosis is the formation of small white calcium lumps under the skin on fingers and other parts of the body. The lumps may break through the skin and leak a chalky white fluid. Ulcers on the other hand are necrotic lesions that are caused by prolonged ischemia following Raynaud's attacks.

There is an article from Medscape Today which explains very thoroughly the various options of prevention and treatment:

What Is the Best Noninvasive Treatment for Digital Ulcers Due to Raynaud's Phenomenon in Scleroderma?

One key point made in this article is:

"The management of the ulcers due to RP must include simple measures such as avoidance of cold, stress, nicotine, caffeine, and sympathomimetic decongestant medications (eg, pseudoephedrine).[1]"

Warm wishes,



Carrie Maddoux

(Retired)ISN Sclero Forums Support Specialist

(Retired)ISN Sclero Forums UK Chat Host

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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