Do your fingers change colour in winter? You may have Raynaud’s Disease.
The Hand Therapy Group are recognised leaders in therapy for the hand and upper limb.
Led by Director, A/Prof Anne Wajon, the practice employs highly qualified and experienced hand therapists in Sydney (physiotherapists and occupational therapists) who offer expert assessment, diagnosis and treatment for people with hand and upper limb pain or dysfunction.
We provide specialised hand therapy services in various locations throughout northern Sydney covering the management of hand and arm conditions. Our staff work very closely with consultant hand surgeons, general practitioners, rheumatologists, sports physiotherapists and referring doctors.
We are happy to communicate with insurance companies, WorkCover, rehabilitation providers, employers and your local physiotherapist, at your discretion.
We are very happy for you to contact us to discuss whether we might be able to help with your condition.
What is Raynaud’s Disease?
Raynaud’s Disease, pronounced ‘ray-nose’ is a condition caused by the sympathetic nervous system which causes narrowing of arteries in the fingers, toes and or nose, resulting in reduced blood flow to these areas. This results in change in colour with fingers turning black or white, and then blue or purple. This cascade of colour changes is known as Raynaud’s Phenomenon. Symptoms include feeling cold, numbness, and occasionally pain in the affected areas.
What causes Raynaud’s Disease?
Raynaud’s Disease can be caused by cold weather, stress and anxiety, use of vibratory tools or existing medical conditions resulting in reduced blood flow. They are often associated with autoimmune or inflammatory diseases such as lupus, scleroderma, rheuamtoid arthritis or CREST syndrome.
Raynaud’s is more common in females, between the ages of 20-40, in colder climates. It is commonly associated with autoimmune conditions such as scleroderma. Some medications can predispose people to Raynaud’s Disease, such as migraine medications. Smoking is also a risk factor.
What can we do?
• Unfortunately, there is poor evidence for medications being effective (such as calcium channel blockers and vasodilators) • Activity modification – avoid smoking, stay hydrated and exercise regularly • Stress management and overall well-being • Wear gloves and mittens, layer your clothing or use hand warmers
If you think you may suffer from Raynaud’s disease, and would like more information on how to manage it, please feel free to book an appointment with one of our experienced therapists today
By Chen Li – BAppSc(Phty), Hand Therapy Group Physiotherapist, Accredited Hand Therapist (AHTA), Certified Hand Therapist (USA)
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