A condition of unknown cause in which the arteries of the fingers are unduly reactive and enter spasm (angiospasm or vasospasm) when the hands are cold. This produces attacks of pallor, numbness, and discomfort in the fingers. A similar condition (Raynaud’s phenomenon) may result from atherosclerosis, connective-tissue diseases, ingestion of ergot derivatives, or the frequent use of vibrating tools. Gangrene or ulceration of the fingertips may result from lack of blood to the affected part. Warm gloves and peripheral vasodilators may relieve the condition. In unresponsive cases sympathectomy is of value. M. Raynaud (1834–81), French physician
Subjects: Medicine and Health.