What is Raynaud's Phenomenon?
Southport Podiatry Clinic can help.
Raynaud's Phenomenon & Chilblains
What is Raynaud's Phenomenon & Chilblains?
Raynaud's Phenomenon & Chilblains are both intermittent circulatory disorders precipitated by cold temperatures or when in contact with cold objects. Raynaud’s phenomenon typically occurs in the fingers and toes and is triggered by cold temperatures. Cold weather or holding cold objects can trigger Raynaud’s phenomenon. It is caused by spasm of the blood vessels in response to the cold, reducing the blood flow to the extremities. Toes (& fingers) will turn white, then a bluish color, and finally red.
The white color occurs when blood vessels constrict and reduces blood flow to the fingers and/or toes. The extremity then appears bluish (cyanosis) from the resulting lack of blood flow and oxygen. As the vessels relax, blood rushes back into the extremities resulting in dark red hue to the skin and can burn and be painful.
Causes of Raynaud's Phenomenon & Chilblains
Raynaud’s phenomenon can develop on its own for no known reason or it can be associated with other diseases, usually autoimmune diseases such as lupus, scleroderma, dermatomyositis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Similar to Raynaud's Phenomenon is Chillblains (or erythema pernio). Similar to Raynaud’s phenomenon, Chillblains are a vasospastic response to a cold stimuli. People can develop painful lesions and itchy bumps on the fingers or toes or even ulcerate. Chilblains, can develop with a day of cold exposure and last for several weeks.
How can Southport Podiatry Clinic help?
Treatment involves keeping the extremities warm, by wearing appropriate socks and shoes to ensure the feet are kept warm. Natural fibres are generally better insulators that synthetic. Generally, the condition is self-limiting and does not require treatment, but if the lesions ulcerate they may require to be dressed. You should speak with our Podiatrist about your treatment options.
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