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Cold Hand Clinic

Signs and Symptoms of Cold Hands Syndrome: See slideshow below.

The University of Chicago Medicine offers a full range of services for the treatment of cold hands syndrome -- a vascular disorder caused by decreased blood flow through the hands and fingertips. The Cold Hand Clinic is one of few programs in the nation providing specialized care for all vascular disorders affecting the hand and upper extremity.

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Signs and Symptoms

If you have cold hands syndrome, you will probably experience one or more of these common symptoms in your fingers and hands:

  • Pain (particularly in cold temperatures)
  • Swelling
  • Abnormal, extreme coldness (particularly. when others in the same environment have warm hands)
  • Numbness/loss of sensitivity or tingling
  • Discoloration (white, blue or red)
  • Streaks of discoloration under the fingernails (splinter hemorrhages)
  • Ulcers/wounds that do not heal

Some patients have reported symptoms in their feet in addition to or instead of their hands.

Slideshow: Signs and Symptoms of Cold Hands Syndrome

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Cold hands syndrome occurs as a result of blocked or constricted blood vessels, caused by a vascular disorder (a cold hand disease) or an injury, such as:

  • Blood clotting
  • Hand trauma, including occupational or recreational/sports injury (e.g., laceration wounds, fractures or penetrating injuries)
  • Diseases that cause narrowing of the blood vessels in your hand and fingers, such as arteriosclerosis
  • Raynaud's disease (primary Raynaud's)
  • Raynaud's phenomenon/syndrome (secondary Raynaud's), caused by autoimmune or connective tissue disease (e.g., lupus, scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome)
  • Tumors or vascular malformations that cause abnormal blood flow between veins and arteries
  • Frostbite

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Why Choose Us?

In the Cold Hand Clinic, we use leading-edge techniques to optimize hand health and lifestyle for patients with cold hand issues. Our doctors are always investigating and creating the latest innovations in the surgical and non-surgical treatment of cold hand diseases, because we are passionate about providing the best care possible for each patient. With extensive training in reconstructive surgery, our physicians are highly skilled in treating even the most complex vascular disorders of the hand and upper extremity.

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  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Circulatory disorders
  • Cold hands syndrome
  • Hypothenar hammer syndrome
  • Ischemia
  • Lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus)
  • Occlusive disorders
  • Raynaud's disease
  • Raynaud's phenomenon/syndrome
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • Scleroderma
  • Thrombosis
  • Vasospastic disorders