RAYNAUD’s DISEASE is a condition that causes some parts of the body to become numb and cold in response to cold temperatures or stress.  Visual symptoms are various skin discoloring ranges.  Splotches, red to dark colored skin, etc.  Raynauld’s is often confused with Cold Agglutinin Disease or vice versa.  While some of the symptoms are similar, their cause/triggers are totally different.  Raynaud’s and CAD (Cold Agglutinin Disease) are not the same thing.

It takes specific testing to confirm either.  If you have an old diagnosis from many years ago based on observation only.  It would benefit you to seek out the latest clinical testing.  To confirm you actually have Raynaud’s or CAD.

The most common area affected are the extremities such as fingers and toes.

In Raynaud’s Disease, the body incorrectly limits blood flow to smaller arteries/blood vessels (Vasospasm).   This is not a CAD response.

Vasospasm refers to the sudden contraction of the muscular walls of an artery.  The contraction causes the artery to narrow and reduce the flow of blood.

To summarize:

Raynaud’s is totally different from Cold Agglutinin Disease.  Though either/or is often assumed.  Often confused.  Often an incorrect diagnosis from some years ago.

Incorrectly diagnosed if proper and thorough clinical medical diagnostic testing was not performed.   Both require proper medical diagnostic testing to differentiate which a patient may have.

Its possible some patients may have both?

Raynauds Disease is the body reducing blood flow via restricting the size of the blood vessels due to the cold or even stress.  Raynaud’s Disease is confirmed using various blood tests, and possibly a test called Nail Fold Capillaroscopy.

Cold Agglutinin Disease causes Red Blood Cells to clump together when affected by the cold.  Then these clumped Red Cells temporarily block the flow of blood in smaller blood vessels that might otherwise be perfectly normal in size.  This is due to the fact blood vessels naturally get smaller in the extremities.  Cold Agglutinin Disease is confirmed using various blood tests.

Cold Agglutinin Disease often results in visual physical symptoms in the extremities that appear the same or similar to Raynauds.  In Cold Agglutinin Disease, when this clumping is occurring (Agglutination), the Red Blood Cells are also being destroyed (Hemolysis).  Which can lead to anemic conditions.

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