/ Research Study! Winter climbing; blood flow to the fingers

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Anna_wells - on 25 Apr 2014
Posted with permission of UKC

Research Study: Winter Climbing; The effect of regular cold exposure on blood flow to the fingers

I am a Medical Student at the University of Dundee, undertaking a research study for my 4th year project. I am looking at the effect of regular cold exposure, associated with Winter Climbing, on blood flow to the fingers.
I would be very grateful if you could spend 5 minutes completing the following questionnaire. Clicking on the link will give you more information about the study, and you will also have the opportunity to volunteer to participate in the lab component of the project.
I would also really appreciate it if you could also share this link with your winter-climbing friends.

Many thanks!

abseil on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Done, good luck with your research.
Anna_wells - on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to abseil:

highclimber - on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

buxtoncoffeelover - on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Not done- tho climb year round on rock it is not winter climbing as per your definition. Definitely suffer from cold hands, tho after third set of rewarming pains hand temps seem to stay fairly stable/less painful.
isi_o - on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Done. I'd be happy to do part 2 as it's something I'm really interested in after being brought up on pictures of frostbite and non freezing cold injuries by my dad when he was doing his phd, but Dundee is a long while away from Stornoway!
veteye on 25 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Done the survey.

Some of the questions are potentially a little misleading for extracting information. So for instance I do take extra gloves with me, and consequently I generally don't get wet hands/fingers as I change gloves.(Or I change into Dachstein mittens where hands seem to fare better if the mittens do get wet).

I think that constriction of the hands generally can affect the syndrome being manifest.So for instance I sometimes get it when I wear surgical gloves which are a bit tight, and especially in that circumstance when I am generally slightly cold.

The latter is also a major factor for me.So if I have many layers on generally and keep my body warm,then I am less likely to get poor blood flow to the fingers.

I also think that a lot of climbers do not drink sufficiently when they are climbing(me included)and consequently we probably do not have sufficient overall circulating volume of blood.So I try to force myself to drink more when I may not necessarily be inclined to drink otherwise.

You probably are aware of all these things,but I did not know if that was indeed the case.

If I am up in Scotland during the time of lab work I would be willing to come along,but that is part of the problem otherwise for a number of the participants who take part in the survery(the distance).

Heike - on 26 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Hi, I filled it in, but ticked 'no' to have you experienced hot aches in non-climbing environments as it has never occurred to me in everyday life. I have however had it whilst white water kayaking in winter when it's freezing and you aren't wearing gloves which I guess is very similar to winter climbing...
wilkie14c - on 26 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

All done.

I used to suffer with the screaming ad-dabs every time once but things have improved to the point I rarely ever get hot aches now. Going leashless has helped a lot on the route, no more blood restricting leashes. Also I've learned that if hands get too cold too quickly, when they warm up and the blood starts to flow thats when I get them. I avoid this now but gearing up in stages. Harness, lid and cramps first then gloves on for a warm up, sort ropes and tie on, warm up again and then gear up. Really helps lots to preserve what warmth you have in your hands.
pwo - on 27 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Hi. Completed but pity there was no question concerning any predisposing factors so you're not getting the complete 'picture'. For example I have used various machines (taken part in various sports) which are known to cause hand arm vibration injuries. So although I suffer from 'white finger' I don't know which activity or activities contributed to the condition. Also no question on road rage associated injury... whilst idly examining my white finger in my car the driver in front thought I was giving him the finger! Good luck with research.
Anna_wells - on 28 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Thanks so much to everyone who has filled this in and all the very helpful and supportive comments! There has been a great response.
Going to keep it open until the end of the week, so any more responses greatly appreciated

sbattams - on 28 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

I am interested in the outcome but didnt fill it in as my experience comes from spending winter with my hands in freezing water when finding white water to kayak down as opposed to climbing. I still get the same problems though.

mbh - on 28 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

Don't do winter climbing, but frequently get symptoms that resemble those of Reynaud's disease, even when it is not very cold. The trigger can be a very brief exposure to cold, such as when taking something out of the freezer.
Jon Read - on 28 Apr 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:
Hurray!!! A human subject research project posted on here that has ethical approval -- good show, and good luck.

Anna_wells - on 02 May 2014
In reply to Anna_wells:

One final push as im going to close the questionnaire at the end of the day -
thank you SO MUCH for all the responses, it has been fantastic! (over 200!)


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