Cardiovascular disease

Raynaud's phenomenon

(Raynaud's disease)

  • Also known as
  • Raynaud's syndrome

About Raynaud's phenomenon

Raynaud's disease is a rare disorder of the blood vessels, usually in the fingers and toes. It causes the blood vessels to narrow when you are cold or feeling stressed. When this happens, blood can't get to the surface of the skin and the affected areas turn white and blue. When the blood flow returns, the skin turns red and throbs or tingles. In severe cases, loss of blood flow can cause sores or tissue death.

Primary Raynaud's happens on its own. The cause is not known. There is also secondary Raynaud's, which is caused by injuries, other diseases, or certain medicines.

People in colder climates are more likely to develop Raynaud's. It is also more common in women, people with a family history, and those over age 30.

Treatment for Raynaud's may include drugs to keep the blood vessels open. There are also simple things you can do yourself, such as

  • Soaking hands in warm water at the first sign of an attack
  • Keeping your hands and feet warm in cold weather
  • Avoiding triggers, such as certain medicines and stress

NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Top Medications for Raynaud's phenomenon according to our users

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  • All men

  • Brand (generic)% of users who said medication was worth it
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  • All women

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All Medications for Raynaud's phenomenon

Phosphodiesterase-5 enzyme inhibitor

  • Cialis
    (Tadalafil)
    Prescription only

    Cialis (Tadalafil) is the only medication in its class that treats both erectile dysfunction and enlarged prostate symptoms. You can also take it on a regular basis, which can allow for more spontaneity, but it can be expensive.

    • Available dosage forms:
    • Pill
  • Levitra
    (Vardenafil)
    Prescription only

    Levitra (Vardenafil) is a first-choice treatment for erectile dysfunction. However, you have to take it at least 60 minutes prior to sex, so the lack of spontaneity may not be good for some people. It can also be expensive.

    • Available dosage forms:
    • Pill
    • Dissolving tablet
  • Viagra
    (Sildenafil)
    Prescription only

    Viagra (Sildenafil) is a first-choice treatment for erectile dysfunction. However, you need to take it at least 30 minutes before having sex, so the lack of spontaneity may not work for some people.

    • Available dosage forms:
    • Pill
  • Pulmonary arterial dilator > PDE-5 inhibitor

    • Revatio
      (Sildenafil)
      Prescription only

      Revatio (Sildenafil) is a first-choice treatment for pulmonary hypertension (high blood pressure in the lungs).

      Was it worth it?
      • Available dosage forms:
      • Pill
      • Liquid
  • Antihypertensive > Calcium channel blocker

    • Nifedipine
      Prescription only

      Nifedipine works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain, but you have to be okay with avoiding grapefruit. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.

      • Available dosage forms:
      • Pill
      • Extended release
    • Norvasc
      (Amlodipine)
      Prescription only

      Norvasc (Amlodipine) works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.

      • Available dosage forms:
      • Pill
  • Antihypertensive > Alpha blocker

  • Antidepressant > Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)

    • Prozac
      (Fluoxetine)
      Prescription only

      Prozac (Fluoxetine) is good for treating depression and anxiety. It's more energizing than other antidepressants, but may not be the best choice for people who have trouble sleeping.Will Prozac work for you?

      • Available dosage forms:
      • Pill
      • Delayed release capsule
      • Liquid

Tips, success stories, and coping strategies for Raynaud's phenomenon

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Besides medications, what else has worked for you?
  • Verapamil