Raynaud's Phenomenon -Symptoms

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What are Raynaud's phenomenon symptoms and signs?

Symptoms of RP depend on the severity, frequency, and duration of the blood vessel spasm. Most patients with mild disease only notice skin discoloration upon cold exposure. They may also experience mild tingling and numbness of the involved digit(s) that will disappear once the color returns to normal. When the blood-vessel spasms become more sustained, the sensory nerves become irritated by the lack of oxygen and can cause pain in the involved digit(s). Rarely, poor oxygen supply to the tissue can cause the tips of the digits to ulcerate. Ulcerated digits can become infected. With continued lack of oxygen, gangrene of the digits can occur.

Less common areas of the body that can be affected by RP include the nose, ears, and tongue. While these areas rarely develop ulcers, they can be associated with a sensation of numbness and pain.

Patients with secondary RP can also have symptoms related to their underlying diseases. RP is the initial symptom of a majority of patients with scleroderma, a skin and joint disease. Other rheumatic diseases frequently associated with RP include systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and Sjögren's syndrome.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: D, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 18

I have a month old baby that I am breastfeeding with lots of pain in my nipples due to this phenomenon and when I get cold it also hurts really badly. I am now just starting blood pressure medications and I hope that they work quickly.

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Comment from: lyngos, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 07

Because of Raynaud's phenomenon I have chilblain on most of my toes, in summer and winter. My toes and feet are purple, blue. Some toes are swollen and very painful. I also get pain in the balls of my feet and in the base and back of heel. I"ve tried creams and foot protectors. I"ve even begun wearing shoes a size bigger. It eases pain which is constant. I saw a podiatrist last week. She confirmed chilblains but told me she did not know about pain on balls of feet and heels. There is no hard skin. I massage them every morning with Vaseline.

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