Re: Diagnosed today...now what?
A Rheumatologist will want to check you out to see if your Raynaud's is primary or secondary, no doubt, as well as determine the severity of your Raynaud's. You might be asked to take a blood test for ANA and it's associated pattern, as well as other antibodies and your Sed and/or CRP rate to determine if you have inflammation. He/She will also if not before the blood test, look at your fingers under a magnifying glass of some sort. These will help the Dr determine Primary from Secondary. Most people have primary and never develop any further problems. Various treatments are available, depending on the Dr and patient, but often involves keeping warm and the affected areas away from cold or temperature changes by mechanical means, such as wearing gloves. Medicines are also available, such as calcium channel blockers, which are taken orally, and creams such as nitro, especially if you have ulcers. Keeping good blood flow is important, staying warm, reducing stress and not smoking are the main focus in treating Raynaud's.