Raynaud's and Stress Fractures

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    Hello everyone!

    It turns out I’ve been suffering from Raynaud’s for years, but never bothered to ask for a diagnosis. I just thought I needed to be tougher! Ha!

    I’m also a distance runner and, as I age (I’m 33), I’ve found that the numbness in my feet is causing series problems. Basically, it takes anywhere between 5 and 9 miles for my feet to warm up enough for me to feel them if I’m running in weather under 70 degrees. Because I live in Boston, most weather is under that mark and I just ignore the problem and plug on. Problem is, I am now dealing with a second round of multiple stress fractures in my metatarsals. Last year I had two that I didn’t even realize were there until it was really late in the season. This year, I had the same thing happen: three new fractures in new locations, one of which is months old in the doctor’s estimation. I have run for years and do everything by the books, from being judicious with my mileage to cross-training to replacing my shoes to taking calcium supplements.

    Because my Raynaud’s seems to be getting worse with age and it is at its most exaggerated in my foot that keeps getting fractured, I can’t help but think that these two things are connected. I realize Raynaud’s might prevent fracture healing in some cases, which might be why my bones aren’t repairing themselves properly during the normal wear and tear of running. That said, I’m wondering if I could get a group opinion on a new theory I’ve cooked up.

    I cannot feel my feet for much of my workouts and even if I warm up enough during a run to regain feeling, they often freeze afterwards during my cool down. Am I literally numb to the pain when I run? Right now, sitting by the fire all warm and toasty, I feel each and every fracture in my foot, but this morning I went to a spin class, thinking because I didn’t feel pain in my foot that I was good to go. It occurred to me only during the class that I wasn’t feeling pain because all I actually felt was the familiar prickling, numbness, and general Raynaud’s discomfort. Am I numb to injuring myself?

    Is this possible? My doctors have no idea. And my podiatrist is sick of seeing new fractures in me.

    Thanks in advance for any and all input. And most of all thanks for this forum! It’s nice to know I’m not just a cold wimp!


    I just found this site as I was researching Raynauds’ Phenomenon and broken metatarsals. I had 2 fractured metatarsals in November and they are healing slowly. I kept asking the orthopedic surgeon if it could be due to the Raynaud’s and he kept responding with no. I think it is. Over the last two months my entire lower leg is colder than the non fractured side and the foot looks it’s purple hue. I took up soaking in a whirlpool tub with some hot water for an hour and it really helped– the afflicted side turning lobster red and then I applied ultrasound therapy to the one stubborn fracture. My Raynaud’s always behaved in a bilateral fashion until the fracture happened. I started taking a supplement that has boron, silica and strontium and it helped immensely (Grow Bone by Vitamin Code) with the hot tub soaks. This product was meant for the prevention of osteoporosis. I hope it can help you…

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