Raynauds & EM

Does Raynauds completely eliminate circulation to the extremities, or can it limit flow to the fingers/toes? My physician believes I have primary Raynauds(induced by cold or stress). However, my fingers always display some circulation. Also, a recent thyroid test indicates my adrenals are balancing my cortisol production.

"investigators have found that, when some affected individuals are not flaring, they have skin temperatures lower than that of other study participants without the disorder (controls)…Some researchers indicate that similar abnormalities may underlie another blood vessel (vascular) condition known as Raynaud’s disease or phenomenon. "


I thought that Raynaud’s only affected you when you are in the cold. I think I have it in my fingers but the neurologist said the pain I have when my fingers are cold is the EM, which doesn’t make sense to me.

Many individuals have stated they experience both Raynauds and EM.
Are your fingers the only area being affected?

That’s what I thought I had…both Raynaud’s and EM. I had it in my feet and fingers. I no longer have it in my feet so it’s like the EM took over there but in my hands, I get terrible pain when my hands are cold and am essentially crippled from the pain because it feels like I have acid burning my fingers. I have never seen the white before they turned red but i’ve read you will not always get both stages…but can’t argue with a doctor.

Does your whole hand(palm,thumb and fingers) burn? Bilateral?

I have both. When it’s cold the raynauds flares white purple blue color and painful and tingling feeling that last for hours after the flare. Feet and fingers. EM from the hot pools hot red in feet and hands. Haven’t both is no picnic. Sometimes it goes way to fast between the two and it’s a horrific experience of pain burning and all colors. I usually have to have someone touch my skin to tell me if I have to warm or cool during that time and usually severe muscle spasm to the foot, toe or fingers or hand happened sort of looks like the exorcist to be honest with you. Raynauds closes the vessels when closed when they should be open to allow the warm blood in. EM opens the vessels when it should close them when warm to cool the extremities. Treatment I believe will make it more difficult if you both.

Walking a thin line there. Hopefully treatment follows.
Do your entire hands(fingers, thumb and palm) burn with an EM flare?
Also, does an EM flare surpass the temperature of other body parts?

My em was only on my hands and feet and my fingers palm knuckles get the most red. But now the em hits my knees, the bottom of my leg, and now it picks one sided. Before it was both sides. Now it’s both sides and then its one side. Very strange.

I have the same problem RayofHope. However, they haven’t diagnosed me with Raynauds yet. There’s so many tests they are doing. I have an abnormal biopsy of my left foot that came back from my neuro but he doesn’t know what they means he tells me. Smh. My EM is just in my feet. I switch from hot burning to cold freezing depending how active I am. Winter is the worst for the cold issues of course and I think not only the hot surfaces I walk on but when it’s super cold aggravates my feet and causes muscle spasms. Not sure if you have issues with muscle spasms in your feet when they get cold?

Does anyone think that it’s possible that EM and Raynauds are the SAME condition where your extremities have difficulty regulating blood flow due to temperature changes? I emailed my neurologist about this possibility and awaiting his response.

I think not in all cases. Eg, what about the people who are flaring 24/7 (so their extremities are always burning, and never get cold)?

I read a paper once that said/theorized that some EM ppl have hypoxic tissue, but that when their body tries to send lots of blood to the area, the blood is short-circuited via a shunting mechanism. So the body sends more and more blood to the area, but the blood never reaches the intended destination. I’m not sure the raynaud’s phenomenon would always fit in here if this were the case.

A bit of a tangent -

I’ve tried low-dose viagra before (this is a raynaud’s treatment) and it surprisingly lessened the burning duration for me. So if the burning usually lasted 3 hours, it would only burn for 1 hour. Then I would get to a state where my face, hands would be bright red, but comfortably warm (!). It was an odd experience because usually the degree of redness/swelling is directly proportional to the pain for me. A Mayo clinic paper somewhere says "Thus, the pain in erythromelalgia may be caused by relative hypoxia despite the high rate of blood flow to the limb, because of the inability to properly extract or use oxygen (as in inflammatory conditions, mitochondrial dysfunction, or toxic exposure), or by severe inflammation or small-fiber dysfunction. " I think this helps explain why viagra lessened the pain for me.

I’d be curious what your doc says!

So far I’ve been managing the EM symptoms that occur in the summer
by the following: 1) cranking the AC 2) taking off shoes when driving
3) taking off shoes and socks and sitting with feet raised up when AC gets
turned off
I do notice my hands getting cold when AC is cranked. So I have to make
sure the
room doesn’t get too hot or too cold. This is the first winter that I’m
dealing with both
Raynauds and EM symptoms. It hasn’t progressed to “pain”, it’s more
discomfort for me.


I underwent a lot of testing with the vascular dr and the weird thing about it was everything came back normal. I even had to submerge my hands in ice water then they ran more tests 3min in ice water felt like a life time very painful so in the end he said I had raynauds phenomenon and that there is really no explanation. So basically I was sent away to follow up in a year like ok thanks guy lol. He had no idea of EM so here was no talking of that at all. my hands right now feel like ice and yet there not the death color like my mom gets but they feel freezing and sometimes tips look like a gray color. You dnt have to have all stages everyone is different. But soon as the temp goes up they go from freezing to feeling like I have them over a fire. But like the cold in the summer in az at 116 degrees I also burn feet swell and turn bright red also hands and face and chest now and upper arms. it started with hands and feet and has now gone to other parts. at night I cant sleep because which ever side I have my face on the pillow it becomes burning so I’m constantly flipping sides and it will wake me and I get up and look and that side of my face is on fire. How do you regulate when your body is so back and forth ugh the struggle is real lol.