Raynaud’s is a common disease. 20% of the population suffers from it worldwide and in India 5-7% of people suffer from it.
What is Raynaud’s?
Raynaud’s is a physical condition in which the blood supply to the tips of phalanges is reduced due to narrowing of blood capillaries and it turns pale or blue.
It’s aggravates during cold climates or stress.
It is more common in females than males.
What are the types of Raynaud’s?
It is of two types –
Primary – also known as Raynaud’s disease and not associated with any disease hence its not so severe. And can resolve on its own without any treatment.
Secondary – also known as Raynaud’s phenomenon. It is mostly based on medical conditions.
What causes Raynaud’s?
Secondary Raynaud’s can be caused by diseases like Scleroderma, Mixed connective tissue diseases, Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Diseases of arteries in which blood vessels can be blocked by plaque And leads to less blood flow to the digits.
Carpal tunnel syndrome – the nerves of the wrist get blocked and results in the numbness of the palm and fingers.
Medicine like beta-blocker, migraine medicine, and chemotherapy can cause the narrowing of blood vessels.
What are the Symptoms?
- Numbness in fingers and toes
- Pain and coldness in finger and toes
- seen on fingertips, toes, lips, tongue, earlobes, and nipples.
- In severe cases, it can lead to cyanosis of your finger.
What are the risk factors?
- Females are more prone then men to get it.
- It can mostly affect people aged 15-30 years.
- It can be hereditary.
- People living in cold weather are affects more.
- Medical diseases like Lupus, scleroderma.
- Occupations that require repeated movements like playing musical instruments.
- People who smokes have a high chance of getting Blood vessels blocked and can lead to Raynaud’s.
What is the treatment for Raynaud’s?
Calcium channel blockers like Amlodipine, Nifedipine, Isradipine is used for the treatment of Raynaud’s as this drug opens small blood vessels in your hands and feet and helps to increase blood flow.
Vasodilators like Nitroglycerin, Losartan, and Sildenafil help to relax blood vessels and increase blood circulation, hence it is used for the first line treatment
precautions to prevent an attack?
- Cold climate can trigger the Raynaud’s hence wear warm clothes.
- Use hand gloves and socks and prevent yourself from cold.
- Keep your hand in warm water and normal water for 10 mins.
- While working, use warm water.
- Maintain the temperature of your room.
- Avoid sudden change from hot to cold environment as it can lead to trigger attack.
- Avoid smoking, as it can cause a drop in skin temperature.
- Exercise helps you to increase blood circulation.
- Try to avoid the stressful conditions, as stress can trigger it.
You can’t stop Raynaud’s attack but you can prevent the severity of it by reducing stress, doing exercise regularly, avoid exposure to cold climates.
Keeping yourself warm by using hand gloves, socks, and warm clothes.