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Blue/Purple Knuckles
abacus_13 posted:
I am a 36 year old female accountant (computer all day) that has a recurring medical issue and getting no answers. I am hoping I might get some insight here. All my knuckles on my hands have turned blue on two occasions, 9/17 & 11/5. Both times it lasted for 24 hours and has my doctors/nurses boggled. They had mentioned Reynaud's, but I have no usual symptoms of that at all. About a year ago I was told that I had the early onset of arthritis in my thumbs because I had synovial cysts in both, but they have gone down quite a bit. My hands are not cold when this happens and the knuckles get so dark it looks like someone has smudged ink all over them. I have had other issues the last couple months with Vertigo, headaches and some other oddities. It was a few days into the vertigo and headaches starting that I had the first blue knuckle episode. I feel like the is my "check engine" light, but so far no one can explain it and I have been all over the internet looking for answers or suggested direction to take. My doctor did tons of blood tests on 10/6 and all of them came back negative, but they did say they are rudimentary tests and that a specialist may have more advanced testing. Could it be arthritis at an early age?? Abacus_13
lushdoc responded:
Dear Abacus 13: What type of doctor are you going to? I'm not a doctor but a person with tons of arthritis. I have OA not RA. I have never had purple knuckles. My advice would be to go to a Rheumatologist who deals with arthritis, and these types of issues. After that he/she would be able to advise you. Good luck and let us know if you find out what is afflicting you. Linda Kennedy :smile:
abacus_13 responded:
I appreciate your response. I am going to a family doctor and have seen two now who have no clue. After all the blood work came back negative they just let it drop, which was frustrating because it is so bizarre that I worry there is a larger underlying problem they are ignoring because they don't know. The doctor Wednesday even told me that their blood work is very basic. They are supposed to be calling me back by today to suggest next course of action...probably a specialist. If they don't I'm going to seek one out myself. This is one symptom in a long line of bizarre symptoms I've had since mid September and I just don't know what to think. Some of the other symptoms I had were vertigo, nausea, headaches, swollen groin lymph node, an issue with my left hip, and some crazy numbing in my left arm. All of which I journaled and told the doctor about. The knuckle issue only happened two days (24 hours each time) over the course of all this, but it is the only symptom I can "show proof" of, so when it happened on Wednesday I went in that day to show them. I told them I don't want it ignored because I feel like it is my bodies "check engine" light. Would you suggest I post this on another type of medical board?? I went here because of being told a year ago I had early onset of arthritis in my thumbs and mention of a rheumatoid specialist. Thank you...Pauline :grin:
wjtwich responded:
Hello Abacus_13... I am a 32 year old female Office Administrator (computer all day also) and I have been experiencing the blue/purple knuckles. No swelling, no real pain per se. But I am clueless. I have done a lot of research online and your posting is the best and closest to what I am actually experiencing. I am extremely healthy, no medical issues (except a little overweight) but this one has me stumped. I want to just dismiss it but I am afraid this too might be my "check engine" light and I am wanting to be pro-active. My blood pressure is perfect. I have been experiencing some headaches, some of the vertigo you mentioned and a strange right hip pain on occassion (plus for me I just recently developed a severe heel pain which I conclude isn't related to my weight since I am extremely active, healthy and on my feel a lot). Some other postings online had mostly talked about swelling and pain that did include the blue/purple color we are seeing - but they also connected it to RA and to the cold weather saying they have no symptons in the summer. I just hope if you find out any new information you would post it here, my symptons are so similiar to yours I am very intrigued at this point. Thanks, -Jana
missp15 responded:
I am a 21 year old female college student who has been experiencing blue/greenish knuckles as well. I am also around computers all the time & experience vertigo, especially when taking showers - which can be pretty scary. This discoloration is a recent occurrence and I don't feel anything different/weird in my hands at all when it happens. The first time my mother pointed out my knuckles we both dismissed it as being dye off of a new pair of dark blue jeans I was wearing, but it kept reoccurring. The blueish green usually begins when I am in a slightly cold environment, and the longer I am there the darker the colors become. Good examples of places it occurs are movie theaters, malls, cars with ac on, and doctor's offices! In fact, yesterday I went to the doctor for an annual checkup, I wasn't sick. She was listening to my heart and I had my hands on my knees sitting upright. She all of a sudden said "Let me see your hands." I put my hands up and my knuckles were blue (it was pretty cold in the office so I wasn't surprised). She asked how long it had been since I had had blueish knuckles and I said I had only recently been noticing it. She said it might be a mild autoimmune disease, nothing serious, but she wanted to take blood to check on that plus the dizziness I had told her about (vertigo). So I gave blood and I will get the results in 5-7 days if it is something severe and 3-4 weeks if the tests show nothing. I will keep you all posted! I am glad I found this message board! My mother thinks that it might be red white & blue disease, she had a colleague at work a couple of years ago who wore gloves when typing on the computer. She one day asked why and the lady said it was because she had "red, white & blue disease". My mother never saw this lady's hands but since I have been getting blueish knuckles she decided to google it and found Raynaud's Disease which seems similar.
amayberry responded:
Have you found out what is causing this?
2findtheway responded:
I know that these posts have been made several months ago, but I hope that this comes as a benefit to yourself or someone. These symptoms may be caused by disseminated Lyme disease, and do not let anyone steer you away from exploring this option until you have been definitively tested either by a test that actually views the actual Borrelia Burgdorferi (bb) bacteria, such as the Bowen QriB (flourescent staining), or some other comprehensive test that confirms the presence of the actual spirochete bacteria. The tests such as the ELISA or the Western Blot are not conclusive, and they are most commonly ordered by your doctor due to convenience, cost effectiveness, or lack of available alternatives. The hip pain (arthritic symptoms usually only on one side) and the blue knuckles (although if this was the only symptom alone it could be something else) is something that I am personally familiar with. The vertigo, headaches, and other "oddities" are all classic symptoms that may be associated with Lyme disease. Many other conditions such as ALS, MS, etc... are often misdiagnosed when indeed they are Lyme disease. I would recommend the book "Everything You Need to Know About Lyme Disease", written by Karen Vanderhoof-Forschner, co-founder of the Lyme Disease Foundation (LDF). I am not affiliated with them in any way, however, I think you will find many answers that you may be looking for. There are also an abundance of resources available over the Internet - simple google Lyme disease and weed through the materials. I am not a medical professional and these are simply suggestions and do not represent professional advice. Good Luck anyone who finds these posts and please respond back. Please spread the word. Take care, 2findtheway
kbspots responded:
What you are describing is a phenomenon common in women with mixed connective tissue disease, which is a disease that could encompass lupus, scleroderma, and myositis thus the term mixed. You may not have any other symptoms at this time. Mixed connective tissue disease sometimes only presents after age 50 and usually tests for it before then are negative. You may have subtle symptoms that are not really bothersome before this time and thus if a rheumatologist takes the usual rheumatology blood tests, they might all be normal. But the blue knuckles is a common indicator that you may develop the mixed connective tissue disease in the future. At this stage it is probably futile to pursue a diagnosis on the basis of just blue knuckles because most doctors, even rheumatologists, don't know anything about this phenomenon.
Jemma123 replied to kbspots's response:
I am 42 year old woman and I just noticed today that my knuckles and palms look blue. Looks like my vains are blue causing this. I really thought I had ink on my hands and tried to wash it off in the bathroom. I am on the computer all day long at work. My hands and arms sometimes go numb/fall asleep even as I am typing. I have had heel pain in my feet for about a year now (thought due to weight) Just yesterday I had pain around my shoulder blade like a joint or something out of place. I haven't had poor circulation that I have been aware of (until maybe now?) I am not on any medication and have no heath issues that I am aware of. I really hope someone gets to the bottom of this since others have it also. I will check out the reference to lyme disease make an appt with my doctor fueled with the info above. Thanks for documenting your experience with this blue knuckle/palm issue.

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