Diagnosing and Treating Raynaud's Disease
To help in diagnosing Raynaud's disease, the doctor will first gather a detailed medical history, which includes asking questions about a person's:
- General health
- Family medical history
- Alcohol consumption
- Use of drugs or medications.
The doctor will also perform a complete physical exam to check for other signs of Raynaud's disease and may recommend certain tests.
For Raynaud's disease to be diagnosed, the doctor must rule out causes of secondary Raynaud's phenomenon, such as lupus or scleroderma.
(Click Types of Raynaud's to learn more about other causes of secondary Raynaud's phenomenon.)
At this point, there is no cure for Raynaud's disease. Therefore, the goals of Raynaud's disease treatment are to reduce the number and severity of attacks and to prevent tissue damage and loss in the fingers and toes.
Most doctors are conservative with treatment recommendations for Raynaud's disease; that is, they recommend non-drug treatments and self-help measures first.
(Click Raynaud's Self-Help Strategies for more information on treatment for Raynaud's disease that does not require medication.)