Practical management of Raynaud's phenomenon – a primer for practicing physicians : Current Opinion in Rheumatology

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Practical management of Raynaud's phenomenon – a primer for practicing physicians

Ramahi, Ahmad; Hughes, Michael; Khanna, Dinesh

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Current Opinion in Rheumatology 34(4):p 235-244, July 2022. | DOI: 10.1097/BOR.0000000000000877


Purpose of review 

Raynaud's phenomenon (RP) is a common vasospastic condition that results in digital hypoperfusion in response to cold and/or emotional stress and is associated with significant pain and disability. The aim of our review is to provide a practical approach for clinicians to inform assessment and management of patients with RP.

Recent findings 

Autoantibodies and nailfold capillaroscopy are key investigations to stratify the risk of progression to systemic sclerosis (SSc) in patients RP, which was recently confirmed in the multicenter, very early diagnosis of systemic sclerosis (VEDOSS) project. Research has explored the complex lived-patient experience of RP including digital vasculopathy in SSc and has highlighted the need for outcome measure development to facilitate research in the field. Pharmacological treatment strategies vary significantly internationally and there is continued interest in developing surgical approaches.


We provide a practical and up-to-date approach to inform the assessment and management of patients with RP including guidance on drug initiation and escalation. Calcium channel blockers are first-line treatment and can be initiated by primary care physicians. We also highlight second-line drug therapies used for refractory RP and the potential role for surgical intervention.

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