Raynaud Phenomenon

Raynaud phenomenon is a problem with blood vessels. It causes blood flow problems to the fingers, ears, nose, and lips. This causes the skin to change color, throb, and ache.
It is managed with healthy habits, such as wearing layers. Medicine may also ease symptoms. Some people may need surgery, but it is rare. Natural therapies have been used to ease symptoms. They should not be used in place of standard care.

Natural Therapies

Likely Effective

Therapeutic gloves are likely to prevent symptoms and improve blood flow. B1, B2

May Be Effective

These herbs and supplements may ease symptoms:
  • Ginseng root has been used to stimulate energy and blood flow. A2
  • Hemorrhoid cream may stimulate blood flow when massaged into hands. A1
Acupuncture inserts thin needles in areas of the body. It may reduce attacks. C1

Not Enough Data to Assess

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.
Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Herbs and Supplements to Be Used With Caution

Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse.

References

A Herbs and Supplements
A1 Chung L, Shapiro L, et al. MQX-503, a novel formulation of nitroglycerin, improves the severity of Raynaud’s phenomenon: a randomized, controlled trial. Arthritis Rheum. 2009;60(3):870-877.
A2 Park KS, Park KI, et al. Efficacy and safety of Korean red ginseng for cold hypersensitivity in the hands and feet: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. J Ethnopharmacol. 2014;158:25-32.
A3 Hélou J, Moutran R, et al. Raynaud's phenomenon and vitamin D. Rheumatol Int. 2013 Mar;33(3):751-755.
A4 Bredie SJ, Jong MC. No significant effect of ginkgo biloba special extract EGb 761 in the treatment of primary Raynaud phenomenon: a randomized controlled trial. J Cardiovasc Pharmacol. 2012 Mar;59(3):215-221.
A5 Choi WS, Choi CJ, et al. To compare the efficacy and safety of nifedipine sustained release with Ginkgo biloba extract to treat patients with primary Raynaud's phenomenon in South Korea; Korean Raynaud study (KOARA study). Clin Rheumatol. 2009 May;28(5):553-559.
A6 Muir AH, Robb R, et al. The use of Ginkgo biloba in Raynaud's disease: a double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Vasc Med. 2002;7(4):265-267.
A7 DiGiacomo RA, Kremer JM, et al. Fish-oil dietary supplementation in patients with Raynaud's phenomenon: a double-blind, controlled, prospective study. Am J Med. 1989 Feb;86(2):158-164.
B Therapeutic Gloves
B1 Malenfant D, Catton M, et al. The efficacy of complementary and alternative medicine in the treatment of Raynaud’s phenomenon: a literature review and meta-analysis. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2009;48(7):791-795.
B2 Ko GD, Berbrayer D. Effect of ceramic impregnated "thermoflow" gloves on patients with Raynaud's syndrome: randomized, placebo-controlled study. Altern Med Rev. 2002 Aug;7(4):328-335.
C Acupuncture
C1 Appiah R, Hiller S, et al. Treatment of primary Raynaud's syndrome with traditional Chinese acupuncture. J Intern Med. 1997 Feb;241(2):119-124.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC
  • Review Date: 11/2019
  • Update Date: 06/15/2020