Specific Symptoms of CREST Syndrome

Symptoms of CREST Syndrome

As mentioned, symptoms of CREST syndrome include:
 
  • Calcinosis. The formation of calcium deposits in the connective tissues, which can be detected by an x-ray. They are typically found on the fingers, hands, face, and trunk and on the skin above the elbows and knees. Painful ulcers may appear if the deposits break through the skin.

 

  • Raynaud's phenomenon. A condition in which the small blood vessels of the hands and/or feet contract in response to cold or anxiety. As the vessels contract, the hands or feet turn white and cold, then blue. As blood flow returns, they become red. Fingertip tissues may suffer damage, leading to ulcers, scars, or gangrene.

 

  • Esophageal dysfunction. Impaired function of the esophagus (the tube connecting the throat and the stomach) that occurs when the smooth muscles in the esophagus lose normal movement. In the upper esophagus, the result can be swallowing difficulties; in the lower esophagus, the problem can cause chronic heartburn or inflammation.

 

  • Sclerodactyly. Thick and tight skin on the fingers, resulting from deposits of excess collagen within skin layers. This condition makes it harder to bend or straighten the fingers, and may also cause skin to appear shiny and darkened, with hair loss.

 

  • Telangiectasias. Small red spots on the hands and face that are caused by the swelling of tiny blood vessels. While these spots are not painful, they can create cosmetic problems.

Scleroderma Information

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