TV presenter shares disturbing photos revealing the painful effects of Raynaud’s phenomenon
Raynaud’s disease, also known as Reynold's phenomenon, is a disorder of the blood vessels which mainly occurs in the fingers and toes. When exposed to cold temperatures or stress, peripheral arteries narrow, limiting the circulation of blood. This causes the extremities to feel cold and numb, plus show discoloration, with the skin turning white, red or blue.
Scottish radio and television presenter Jenni Falconer was diagnosed with Raynaud’s phenomenon at 17. "I first had it at school during a sports science lesson," she told The Mirror in 2014. "I’d just finished some exercise and returned to class when my right index finger went completely white, almost fluorescent. Everyone was amazed at the color – bloodless fingers can look freaky."
"Since then, the condition has worsened," she continued. "I get it in all my fingers and toes and an attack can last up to 30 minutes. When life returns to the affected part of my body, it’s like being poked with cocktail sticks – a severe case of pins and needles. A burning sensation adds to the pain, too."
On Instagram, the 43-year-old shared a photo revealing the condition's painful effects. Due to poor circulation on a cold day, her fingers are disturbingly white. "Yesterday it was perfect; a relatively warm, sunny day wIth little breeze," she wrote in the caption. "Today in comparison is so cold and damp that it literally chills my bones. If you suffer from Raynaud’s Phenomenon, then this sight will be something you might totally relate to...."
Falconer was right. In the comments, @schnixy.schnix.nix.nicki wrote, "I feel your pain!, I recently got told I had raynauds after going to the doctor because I thought I was starting to get frost bite in my toes! It was so painful I could hard walk on one foot."And @racheleveskin agreed, writing, "I literally just posted a pic of my raynaud fingers from today on my instagram story! I feel your pain! Bring back the sun ☀️ x"
Meanwhile, @lizka77, who also suffers from the phenomenon, offered some advice: "Totally know how you feel, mine tends to come on after running ? but I suck it up and carry on. Started wearing fingerless gloves, whilst running, which seems to help me xx hope yours gets better soon xx"
Last March, Falconer shared another jarring photo, where one finger looks horrifically white compared to the others. "This is my hand at its most attractive..... ?," she wrote in the caption. "Anyone else suffer with bad circulation?" Once again, several other people suffering from the condition shared their stories in the comment section.
There are two types of the condition: Primary Reynold's, aka Reynold's disease, is more common, and so mild that many people don't even notice it. Meanwhile, Secondary Reynold's, aka Reynold's phenomenon, is rare and more serious, characterized by the discoloration and discomfort. If the arteries become totally blocked, that could cause skin ulcers or dead tissue, which is difficult to treat; but otherwise, the condition is not fatal.
Reynold's mostly affects women and people living in cold climates. There is no cure, but there are ways to manage living with the symptoms through medication.
This article was originally published on VT.co