Each year when the temperatures drop, we at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care see an increase in the number of cases of Raynaud’s Disease—a condition that causes toes (and fingers) to turn red or bluish white and become tingly, numb or feel like they have pins and needles. Below are some facts about this condition and how to manage it.
FACT: Raynaud’s most often affects women (although men can get it as well). Typically, it first strikes somewhere between the ages of 15 and 30. Other risk factors include:
- Climate—this condition is more prevalent in patients who live in colder climates
- Family history—your chances of developing Raynaud’s are greater if you have a parent or sibling who has the disease.
FACT: There are two types of Raynaud’s. Raynaud’s Disease is what this disorder is named if it exists on its own. Raynaud’s can also be caused by a secondary condition, such as an autoimmune or vascular disease, overuse injury, smoking and by certain medications. It is then called Raynaud’s Syndrome or Phenomenon.
FACT: Patients who have jobs that involve repetitive trauma, like operating a jack hammer, are more likely to develop Raynaud’s Disease.
FACT: There is no specific blood or laboratory test to diagnose Raynaud’s. If you experience the above symptoms, you should make an appointment at our Edison (732-204-6630), Monroe (732-204-6802) or Monmouth Junction (732-204-6945) offices so that our podiatrists, Dr. Varun Gujral and Dr. Nrupa Shah, can examine your feet and rule out other disorders that might produce similar symptoms.
FACT: There are a number of different treatment options for Raynaud’s. The podiatrist will determine the best course for you based on the severity and frequency of the attacks and whether or not it is stemming from another problem.
FACT: You can help reduce the likelihood of an attack by:
- Wearing two pairs of socks to help keep feet warm
- Pre-heating your car for several minutes before getting in
- Learning to manage stress (another potential Raynaud’s trigger)
- Not smoking
- Exercising regularly
If you want to learn more about Raynaud’s or suspect you may have this disorder, contact us today.