Raynaud’s phenomenon, digital ulcers and nailfold capillaroscopy

Ariane L. Herrick, Fredrick M. Wigley, Marco Matucci-Cerinic

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Raynaud’s phenomenon (RP) is the clinical manifestation of defect of the thermoregulatory vessels in the skin and of medium and small vessels in the peripheral arterial system. Triphasic colour changes (pallor, cyanosis and hyperaemia) occur as an exaggeration or perturbation of normal responses to cold ambient temperature or emotional stress. RP occurs primarily in the fingers with relative sparing of the thumbs. It can also occur in the toes, tongue, ears and nose. In patients with SSc, RP can progress to digital ulcerations and (less frequently) to critical ischaemia and is then associated with significant pain and disability, including work disability. This chapter reviews the pathogenesis of RP (including the normal physiology of the thermoregulatory vessels), imaging techniques (with a focus on nailfold capillaroscopy) and approaches to treatment, including in the patient with digital ulcers or critical ischaemia. New approaches to treatment are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationScleroderma
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Pathogenesis to Comprehensive Management
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9783319314075
ISBN (Print)9783319314051
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Calcium channel blocker
  • Digital ulceration
  • Endothelium
  • Nailfold capillaroscopy
  • Phosphodiesterase inhibition
  • Primary RP
  • Prostanoids
  • Secondary RP
  • Thermoregulatory vessels

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Raynaud’s phenomenon, digital ulcers and nailfold capillaroscopy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this