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I'm now 43, (started in my thirties) have had swollen knuckles on right hand only (index finger, forth finger & now the little one). Very painful when too cold or when too hot, and when I knock fingers accidently. My other hand & knuckles are perfectly fine!
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I'm 25, had raynauds for about 8 years. I have had this swollen finger thing for about 3 years, I first got it and thought it was chilblains but at the start process of swelling I can't even bend my fingers, they then swell, go purple and crack and become infected, just in one knuckle per finger. It always starts in the. Idle finger of my right hand, which I injured on the first year I had it and it took a long time to heal. I also have loose shoulders, can touch my elbows behind my back, I exercise everyday and eat healthy, I'm naturally bigger framed but health conscious so stay 8 stone for my 5 foot 3 frame. I drink occasionally and have never smoked. I am often anaemic and rarely get periods. I am blood group b positive, hope there is an answer somewhere
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Hi all i have the same thing, my doctor is treating me with steriod injections into the wrist for carpal tunnel, this is when the nerve in the hands are being pinch. i have being tested for arthritis and it came back negative. hope this helps you all. yes we can live with it,it is annoying and like tonight, i am in severe pain in the finger joints. and still up;. Good luck.
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I'm reading your post, mouth wide open. I am about your age and have 90% the same symptoms you do (and I'm also a scientist, so ironic!). My knuckle flare ups last from 1 hour to 1 week and are one knuckle at a time. Sometimes it turns purple or red. I have bad circulation, always have, mainly get edema in my feet like a pregnant woman. I can dislocate my shoulder like it was nothing, and have always been "double jointed" but do not have stretchy skin, so before you ask I don't think I have ehlers-danlos syndrome. HOWEVER, there definitely are some blood vessel abnormalities on both sides of my family, and it turns out despite the fact I'm pretty healthy and have perfect cholesterol/TGs I have a 50% blockage in my iliac artery. I'm asymptomatic though! Looks like collateral vessels have done just fine.
Like you, both my arms go numb - also probably due to the fact my BP is always super low. even if it goes up during exercise it goes right back down. On "normal" days it's about 100/65 but sometimes much lower. So I get dizzy, have positional/postural numbness in my limbs, yet have good distal pulse so everything must be functional, right?
I have heavy periods but no fibroids, and do not have PCOS but do not procuce progesterone, and probably haven't for years, so that affects the bleeding (I get and "estrogen period"), memory, BP, etc.
I was checked for all the autoimmune stuff (incl. RA, lupus), thyroid panel, you name it. All came back just fine.
So - why are my joints "loose"? My shoulder has dislocated over 30 times, my wrists get more and more loose the more I exercise, my ligaments in my elbows feel like they're slipping sometimes, and without any instigation my joints swell up (even on my toes some times) and cannot even be grazed with a feather they hurt so bad! This morning when it happened it was gone by the time I got to work (30 mins in the car) and I took no NSAIDS etc. just my morning regimen of vitamins and supplements (no fast acting antiinflamatories in that concoction).
Bottom line, after just sharing my story, is that Ive been on a quest for years to get answers and have gotten none. If you ask me, as a scientist, what it is I think it all points to a connective tissue disease that may or may not be autoimmune and is NOT EDS or other related syndromes. All of my symptoms have to do with poor connective tissue, mainly collagen, and resulting pathology/inflammation/pain.
I've thought of going to a research hospital to see if someone wants to sample me genetically and start me as patient zero!
p.s. I quit smoking too and it helped with the circulation somewhat. And the tick borne disease you may have contracted from the wood tick? You're right, they do not carry Borrelia (Lyme disease) but plenty of other pathogens that cause rocky mountain spotted fever, tularemia, colorado tick fever, Q fever and tick paralyis. Word to the wise, always keep the tick just in case! I just had one embedded in my back yesterday (lone star tick) so the irony continues! If you're concerned about having a long illness after tick bite you can contact your doctor and have blood sent to Mayo clinic for one of the only "tick panels" the run on humans. There's much better medicine for our companion animals, I swear - you'd probably get much better testing, by research labs even, if you were a dog or thoroughbred!
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Hi everybody. My this whole thing does sound so mysterious with so many of us with similar symptoms and no diagnosis. I am an older female with no health problems. I was wakened up this morning with severe pain in the skin on top of all of my middle knuckles on my right hand. They all had bright red spots where the pain was and were a bit swoolen. The pain, swelling and redness all disappeared as soon as I got up and starting moving. Came here to see if I might be able to diagnose myself. Guess I'll start taking Infrared saunas to eliminate toxins in case that may be the problem. Good luck everybody. Hope all your symptoms disappear.
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I have red swollen knuckles on both hands and they are getting progressively worse..............................Does anyone know if it is possible to have knuckle replacements similar to hip or knee joint replacements................. and if so, how successful are they?

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I have this now and about once a year.  Drink black cherry juice and it goes away within hours.  Works for me

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stop playing tambourine. get a girl.

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I have the same thing. I work with my hands and have had the condition for 3 or 4 years now (am 25 and female). I'm planning to consult a doctor next week as it's becoming very annoying, especially at work where it slows me down, but so far my best guess is "Primary Reynaud's" (hoping it's not more serious!) which Wikipedia has some basic info on...Will let you know what the docs say if they can figure it out!

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Have you gone to your doctor yet to be seen? Swelling and color change such as you are describing does not sound good much less normal! Your doctor may want to refer you to a rheumatologist. My mother, has been a diabetic for nearly 40 years, started with those same symptoms as you have described last month. Her knuckles look almost black now. The swelling has finally gone down some. Her primary care physician is concerned about poor circulation, so she was referred to be seen by a rheumatologist immediately. Hope you get check out soon, and best of luck to you!!
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Did you ever go to the doctor?? My GF has this same issue in ring finger and right pointer finger and now it is moving to her toe. please respond thanks.
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I'm a 40-yr-old female who first developed the stiff swollen purple itchy sore knuckles two winters ago (2010-2011). This was a stressful period of time during which I was renovating a house in very cold weather and eating poorly (excess sugar and processed foods, and probably I was eating dairy and meat, as well), and I was probably drinking a bit more alcohol than usual.

My symptoms at that time were varied. It seemed like there were multiple things going on all at the same time, all on my hands: 1) the overall swelling of my hands and stiffness in all joints; 2) the red patches on my fingers; AND 3) the sore itchy purple swollen knuckles.

I saw a rheumatologist who said it was a dermatological condition and sent me to a dermatologist. The dermatologist prescribed a topical cream that did help.

Since then the problem has only flared up when I eat a poor diet (sugar and processed flour-based junk) and/or drink alcohol for a few days in a row or more than usual during a couple of weeks.

Sometimes it definitely feels like the wine is the problem. I can almost feel the itchiness begin right after I drink wine.

I am like many people in that I was born a sugar and flour addict who struggled for nearly 20 years with a terrible diet including binge eating on junk food, mostly sugar and processed flour-based junk. In 2005 - eight years ago and before I ever had the problems on my hands -- I began the process of cleaning up my diet and learning how to eat properly. Of course there is so much conflicting information out there on diet, but the one thing that everyone agrees on is the total avoidance of man-refined sugar and processed foods (including wheat flours), and so I have, for the most part, avoided that c**p for about 8 years now (except that I was eating c**p during the 2010-2011 winter when I first developed this problem with my hands). But because my diet is mostly “clean” nowadays it is pretty easy for me to see a direct cause-and-effect relationship between food and various symptoms. (For instance, just four or five cookies can cause me to get a urinary infection and even become incontinent within a few hours.)

But it is harder to see the cause-and-effect with my hands because I tend to drink more alcohol at the simultaneously with my diet slipping towards more sugar and junk.

However, the past three weeks have been an exception. I am now having a flare-up of the problems on my hands but my diet has not been “bad” – it has been “good” in that I have not eaten sugar and flour, but I did begin to eat quite a bit more animal foods (yogurt, cheese, and meat, including red meat). And also during this period I have been drinking a lot more alcohol than usual, and mostly red wine, but also white and mixed drinks.

Thus for me it is clear that the problem is probably alcohol and probably wine but I cannot be sure if it might not also have something to do with animal-derived foods and particularly dairy, and the reasons I say this are (1) I have been eating a lot more yogurt and cheese than usual and my hands are flaring up and (2) in all my reading on diet there are many writers who advocate for eliminating or severely restricting dairy. But it could be just the wine. (And incidentally this morning I found a webpage discussion like this one where someone said that all wines, red AND white, contain a lot of possible allergens in addition to just sulfites, including the venom of a certain insect, preservatives, tannins, histamines, etc.)

As someone else wrote, it’s tough because you want relief and therefore you’re not too excited to conduct the necessary experiments. I could continue eating the yogurt and cheese and just eliminate the alcohol, to see if dairy is the cause, but I just want the problem to go away, so I will probably eliminate the wine AND the dairy, and if I want to drink, I’ll have 1-2 cocktails.

 

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Chilblains are small, itchy swellings on the skin that occur as a reaction to cold temperatures. They affect the body's extremities, such as the toes, fingers, heels, ears and nose.

Chilblains are uncomfortable but can be prevented. They usually develop several hours after exposure to the cold, and it is possible to get several at the same time.

The symptoms of chilblains include burning and itching on the hands and feet and a change of skin colour. In some cases, the skin may become sore and blister.  

Some people have chilblains every winter that last for up to five months. These can cause persistent sores that may lead to scarring.

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I have the exact same problem - only in my left index finger. I don't have the itching or stiffness, just random shoots of tenderness (usually when my finger is bent). I crack my knuckles all the time, but there is no link between cracking knuckles and arthritis. Cracking knuckles is merely a release of air from the cartilage pocket, while arthritis is withering of said cartilage, causing bone to rub on bone. I, too, am only 24 and hope that alternating ice and heat (like you would with a sore ankle) will help!

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You may have psoriatic arthritis. I have it. Psoriatic does not test positive for rheumatoid factor. One of the hallmarks of psoriatic arthritis is what's called dactylitis (aka "sausage digit") whereby an entire finger (or toe - or multiple fingers and toes) is swollen and stiff. This can come on suddenly. Most with psoriatic arthritis develop the arthritis between 30 and 50, I got it at 29. It is NOT the same as rheumatoid arthritis, though it has SOME similarities in that they are both inflammatory forms of arthritis. It is not the same as osteoarthritis - which is wear and tear of joints. Check out the National Psoriasis Foundation website. Not everyone who develops the arthritis had the skin psoriasis first.

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