- "Raynaud's disease and Raynaud's phenomenon are rare disorders that affect blood vessels. These disorders are marked by brief episodes of vasospasm (narrowing of the blood vessels). Vasospasm causes decreased blood flow to the fingers and toes, and rarely to the nose, ears, nipples, and lips. The fingers are the most commonly affected area, but the toes also are affected in 40 percent of people with Raynaud's."
In other words, one's hands and feet are more prone to getting cold. This is particularly problematic on cold weather and high altitude trips. People who have this disease are more likely to experience frostbite or other cold injuries.
As this type of disease has little effect on the normal person living and working in a city, there are a number of people out there who are undiagnosed. Most who spend time in the outdoors are aware that they might have "poor circulation" in the cold. And most who feel that they have "poor circulation" take measures in order to ensure that they do not suffer frostbite.
An April 2007 online issue of the the Wilderness Medicine Newsletter addressed Raynaud's. The newsletter prescribes both treatment and rehabilitation to the disorder. If you have circulation issues or a diagnosed case of Raynaud's and have completed this rehabilitiation let us know how it worked out. If it had a positive effect and you found that your hands and feet remained warmer in cold climates we would certainly like to pass that on. And if it didn't work, we'd like to pass that along as well.
--Jason D. Martin