My cold hands are swelling and itching


Q: Hello, I want to ask about a weird thing that is happening to my hands. The reason why I'm asking you is cause the doctors that have examined me are not looking interested at all about my condition that is getting worse, and are not trying to think a little bit more so I'll try to be as detailed as I can to help you the most to give you as much info for you to have.
I have cold hands since 14 years I think. Now I'm 23. It looks like it is raynaud's disease. Three years ago I started experiencing red rashes on my fingers that started on one finger and now are spread on eight fingers. They look like big red spots that are swelling and itching (like not on the skin but under the skin). When my hands get cold, my fingers stop itching and the swelling decreases, but the red spots now go blue and remain under the skin. The bad thing is that it spreads like an allergic reaction and in three years had spread from one to eight fingers and doesn't change it remains the same for the whole 4 seasons.
I went to dermatologist for the third time last week, she told me that this is not a skin problem and that has raynaud's symptom. So she sent me to an internist. The internist sent me to do blood test. I did three. So she told me the blood was OK. The blood didn't had signs for arthritis she said nor high blood sugar level. Now she sends me to an rheumatologist to check my blood vessels on my hands for the next month. And by the way my condition gets worse week by week, I wear gloves whole day for nearly 2 months, I tell them all that and they are like ...OK.
The internist thinks that my blood vessels are damaged and that is what's causing the swelling, which doesn't make sense, they are itching when warm exactly like an allergic reaction.
I don't think that the cold hands are the cause. I have cold hands that go from pale white to blue to red since I'm 14. This swelling thing is happening the last 3 years and doesn't stop spreading. When my fingers swell I can't make a fist completely.
Please help me if you can by any advice so I can be directed to the right cure or the right person cause my doctors look like they don't even know where to direct me.
Thanks in advance.

Symptoms:  Cold hands, itching, swelling
My cold hands are swelling ...-1 My cold hands are swelling ...-2 My cold hands are swelling ...-3

A:   Hello. Welcome to ask the doctor.

As per details, the most likely possibility for your symptoms is Raynaud's phenomenon only. It is characterised by discoloration of the skin from pale to blue to red on exposure to cold or cold water.
It is also related to smoking and tobacco intake. If one continues to take tobacco, it may persist for long.
In such cases, elaborative evaluation is done to rule out systemic causes which mainly include Connective tissue disorder. For this, ANA that is antinuclear antibodies test is ordered.
other common causes are occupational, neurological, drugs, miscellaneous.
I prefer to advise tablet Nifedipine in patients after ruling out any contraindications.
Along with patient is advised to avoid tobacco in any form.
Hands are advised to be kept warm.
Drugs like pentoxifylline, aspirin also prove to be useful in some.
Visit your rheumatologist and share my opinion with him.

I hope it helps.
Take care.

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