Hand skin temperature changes in patients with chronic liver disease

J. D. Steele, J. F. Dillon, J. N. Plevris, J. L. Hauer, I. A. D. Bouchier, P. C. Hayes

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    Abstract

    Previous studies have shown that changes in the peripheral circulation occur in patients with liver disease. We have investigated the temperature of the hands of 26 patients and 13 controls using a liquid crystal contact thermography system. Significant differences in resting hand temperature and appearance were observed when the patients were categorised according to Child's score. The appearance depended upon the severity of liver disease; Child's A patients have warm hands of normal thermographic appearance; Child's B patients have cold hands with an abnormal thermographic appearance; whilst Child's C patients have warm hands with an abnormal thermographic appearance. After right-hand ice-cold water immersion, right-hand recovery was abnormally slow in Child's B and C groups compared with Child's A patients and controls. In addition, there was left-hand reflex vasoconstriction during the right-hand warm-up period in those with severe liver disease. With regard to autonomic function, no significant difference in right-hand temperature, thermographic appearance or warm-up rate was detected between those with and those without autonomic neuropathy. These results indicate that autonomic nervous system dysfunction is not the predominant cause of these changes. (C) Journal of Hepatology.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)927-933
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Hepatology
    Volume21
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1994

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    Steele, J. D., Dillon, J. F., Plevris, J. N., Hauer, J. L., Bouchier, I. A. D., & Hayes, P. C. (1994). Hand skin temperature changes in patients with chronic liver disease. Journal of Hepatology, 21(6), 927-933.