What is the Difference Between Raynaud’s and Vibration White Finger?

Raynaud’s Phenomenon is a common condition that does not usually cause any problems. However, people often confuse it with Vibration White Finger. The difference between Raynaud’s and Vibration White Finger is that VWF is actually a secondary form of Raynaud’s syndrome that is caused by prolonged us of vibrating tools.

Vibration White Finger is also known as Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS). People have developed HAVS as a result of prolonged exposure to intense vibration tools over a long period of time.

The Difference Between Raynaud’s and Vibration White Finger

Vibration White Finger, also known as Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is a secondary form of Raynaud’s Phenomenon. It usually affects those who work with, or have worked with, vibrating tools over a long period of time.

There are a few things that can cause confusion between the two conditions. The main reason people think that Raynaud’s and Vibration White Finger are the same condition is because of the two having similar symptoms.

The symptoms of Raynaud’s include:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Pins and needles
  • Difficulty moving the affected area

The symptoms of Vibration White Finger include:

  • Whitening or blanching of the fingertips
  • Numbness and tingling in the fingers or hands
  • Cysts in finger and wrist bones
  • Lack of dexterity or grip strength
  • Loss of sensitivity of touch

The two conditions can also be worse in the cold. Vibration White Finger has the same symptoms as Raynaud’s with added ones on top of it.

Causes of Vibration White Finger

Vibration White Finger is caused by the use of vibrating tools over a long period of time. This can be a part of your job, but if you did not have the adequate protection whilst at work and you have Vibration White Finger, then you may be able to make a claim.

Some of the tools that can give off enough vibration to cause VWF include: jackhammers, grinders, breakers, jigsaws, and hand held power tools. This list is not exhaustive, ad any power tool has the potential to cause VWF.

As people who use power tools for a living will be particularly susceptible to VWF as they are using them on a daily basis for long periods of time, employers have a duty to inform employees of the risks associated with the work and to provide adequate safety equipment, such as vibration-absorbing gloves.

Other ways to help prevent VWF include:

  • Taking regular breaks from using vibrating tools
  • Ensuring tools have a regular maintenance schedule and are in good order
  • Undertaking training to ensure you are using tools in the correct way

What to do if you think you have Vibration White Finger

If you think you may have Vibration White Finger, the first thing you should do is make an appointment with your GP to get a diagnosis of the condition. The next thing you should do is make a note of the companies you worked for and how long you worked at each one, the tools you used and the average amount of time you used them per day. This information will help you if you wish to make a claim for VWF.

How We Can Help

Here at The Compensation Experts we work with solicitors who have years of experience dealing with all manner of industrial disease claims. This includes Vibration White Finger. Contact us today by filling in out contact form or by calling us on 0800 182 2187 to speak to one of our friendly knowledgeable advisors.