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Red and Purple, Swollen and Hot feet/toes and hands/fingers

(19 Posts)
PavlovtheCat Mon 24-Mar-14 20:50:58

I have a back problem for which i take meds, at varying doses depending on what pain I am in. Could this be the cause of it?

I have noticed it on and off for a while but it's not hugely problematic, mostly in my feet, but sometimes my hands, or fingers in particular get hot/red and sore/stiff (not ever purple, but quite red). I notice it with my feet when I exercise in particular, when I take my trainers off for pilates (a while ago since I did that though!) I have red, swollen, sometimes purple feet, where my friend who has also exercised has beautifully slender, normal coloured feet!

Anyway, I tend to notice most when I get in the shower at home, I guess as that's when i look down? Or maybe it's when the burning is most obvious.

Today, I was standing on my feet, they felt really hot, burning, throbbing, and when I looked down they were almost florescent purple around the toes, and red too. Made me go shock and I thought I would see if anyone had a clue what that's about?

It's weird because, once apon a time I used to have Very Cold hands and feet, used to drive DH bonkers. I was notorious for it - in the summer when it was nice and warm I would at night when we got into bed, put my feet on his back and he would scream! (in the winter I didn't dare, they were so cold that would be just cruel, I learnt from experience!), and now, they are always very hot in bed.

Cocolepew Mon 24-Mar-14 20:53:33

sounds like DH, he just presumed its bad circulation

Cocolepew Mon 24-Mar-14 20:54:00

Though its only his feet

PavlovtheCat Mon 24-Mar-14 20:58:34

I guess that would explain the bad circulation the other way too with the ice cold feet. always been like that though, for as long as I can remember, which is why this is so unusual for me. I can't remember how long it's been like it, probably a year or so, it comes and goes, not constant. But it's getting more noticeable.

Sometimes I feel hot and swollen generally though, not sure that makes sense, like hands and feet and face feel hot, get red flush in face.

I am going to google side effects of my meds, perhaps I should keep a diary see if it's a side effect, if it flares up with increase in pain relief.

PavlovtheCat Mon 24-Mar-14 20:59:39

Can anything be done to fix circulation, certain exercises? food? drink more water? (that's the answer to a lot of complaints, and I still can't manage to drink the right amount!)

Cocolepew Mon 24-Mar-14 21:00:17

A diary would be a good idea, maybe you should see your Dr anyway?

PavlovtheCat Mon 24-Mar-14 21:06:51

I spend too much moaning at my gp about my bloody back and related shit. I went to see him about some aches and pains not long ago which I think is known as 'fed-up-itis' due to such shit chronic pain. If I go back again with some silly thing he is going to be marking 'hypochondriac' on my file in big letters if he has not already done so grin i will only go back if I actually am worried. Which I am not at the moment, just curious.

Raynaud's or possibly Erythromyalgia. Both are kind of like 'spasms' of the circulatory system. There are varying degrees of severity and they often present together. Lots of medications can affect circulation (hormonal birth control is a big one) and caffeine can make it worse. I have found that a little red wine, dark chocolate and cinnamon and chili peppers are helpful for circulation, as well as moderate daily exercise.

PavlovtheCat Mon 24-Mar-14 21:25:00

oscar I was just coming on to say i had found this:

'Erythromelalgia is sometimes caused by other disorders. A partial list of diseases known to precipitate erythromelalgia is below.[6]
Myeloproliferative disease
Hypercholesterolemia
Autoimmune disorder
Small fiber peripheral neuropathy
Fabry's disease
Mercury poisoning
Mushroom poisoning
Sciatica
Some medications, such as bromocriptine, pergolide, verapamil, and ticlopidine'

I have sciatica, horrid sciatica as a consequence of back problems. It fits the description (and the photos) quite well, in particular the exercise, my feet swell hugely when I exercise. In fact, both of those conditions fit what i have had for a while in terms of both extremes of heat/cold.

I drink a LOT of caffeine. I try to cut it down, not very good at that, it creeps back up. I don't drink much wine any more but do like the odd glass of wine, and I love chilli so will try that, thank you.

Oh, that's too bad Pavlov flowers. Sciatica is horrid enough on it's own without adding secondary issues. Definitely talk to your GP and see what they say. I'm no expert but have suffered from circulation problems. It's uncomfortable and embarrassing so you shouldn't feel like your GP will think you're a hypochondriac...Good luck smile.

PavlovtheCat Wed 26-Mar-14 21:34:38

Thank you for your posts oscar not had a significant repeat in my feet, but had trouble with hands yesterday and today becoming hot, swollen, red, almost but not quite purple, while I was typing at work. But feet have gone the opposite again, ice cold! Like they knew I was talking about them not being cold any more and they felt sorry for me grin Well, not really, but weird though.

I have had chilli today for the 2nd time this week and it's only wednesday! no red wine, or cinnamon, but have had some chocolate grin

flow4 Thu 27-Mar-14 08:32:59

Pavlov, it might be worth doing some research into psoriatic arthritis. Most people who get it already have psoriasis, but a minority develop swollen fingers/toes and other arthritic symptoms before any skin problems, or without any they notice. www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/psoriatic-arthritis/symptoms.aspx

flow4 Thu 27-Mar-14 08:37:21

Actually, now I look, another inflammatory arthritis can also cause swollen fingers/toes: www.arthritisresearchuk.org/arthritis-information/conditions/ankylosing-spondylitis/symptoms.aspx

PavlovtheCat Thu 27-Mar-14 20:00:49

flow I have been reading about ankylosing spondylitis in more detail since this. Psoriasis can be a feature of that. I never knew I had psoriasis until I googled some images. I don't know why i didn't think the sores/flakey skin i get on my feet would be it! I have some other symptoms of AS, and other inflammatory arthritis, particularly due to ongoing back problems that have not been fixed with discectomy. And it was mentioned to me due to some of those other symptoms by some other people, the AS but I sort of thought, no I don't get other symptoms but a) I am starting to and b) i forgot/didn't consider some others being the symptoms, didn't link together.

I am thinking of burying my head in the sand a little while longer. not sure I am ready for the long haul of testing, especially as it might not be it. i have had my fill of gps and hospitals.

but. the fact that you have mentioned it here, along with my own thoughts and those of others too, it's more likely than I thought it was a few weeks ago.

PavlovtheCat Thu 27-Mar-14 20:03:49

the only two symptoms I don't have there is IBS and planter fasciitis. i get all the other symptoms and pain in all those areas mentioned apart from perhaps my knees, some pain on and off. neck pain perhaps less painful and more creeky/crunchy, bit of pain.

PavlovtheCat Thu 27-Mar-14 20:04:15

thank you for that link flow btw, appreciate it.

flow4 Thu 27-Mar-14 21:23:32

You're welcome, Pavlov. It's on my mind, because it's possible I have it too. sad And I am also avoiding the GP, not least because I have already had two new diagnoses in the past six months, and I've had a run of health appointments and am having a hip replacement in May, so I know exactly what you mean about wanting to bury your head in the sand...

PavlovtheCat Thu 27-Mar-14 21:51:28

Oh that's crap flow, Sorry to hear that sad I have noticed that it is not unusual for inflammatory arthritis of some kind to go hand in hand with other auto immune conditions, and also with other medical conditions. I had read once, when researching my own back problems, that there is suggestions that auto immune conditions can be triggered by some kind of body trauma, i.e. injury, virus, emotional stress, infection that kind of thing. might be why lots who have it have other medical stuff going on.

I wish you luck with your health.

flow4 Thu 27-Mar-14 22:02:36

Thanks pavlov. There is a question mark over my diagnosis because my blood tests have not shown inflammatory markers... But I have aggressive arthritis that is getting worse much more quickly and in more joints than they expect from OA. I have x-rays that show my R hip went from normal(ish) to severely arthritic in 16 months, and I also now have arthritis confirmed in feet, knees, hands and jaw, and suspected in ankles, back and possibly shoulder. Like you, it didn't occur to me that my skin problems could be psoriasis until I looked at google images - they are relatively mild compared with widespread pain, so I don't think about them much and didn't even mention them to the rheumatologist because I didn't know they were significant...

Fwiw, onset of my symptoms was pretty sudden, and followed 6-9 months of extreme stress.

I wish you luck with your health too. I hope you get yourself sorted. smile

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