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May 1961

Cryopathies: A Review: Classification; Diagnostic and Therapeutic Considerations

Author Affiliations


Department of Internal Medicine and Hematology Research Laboratory, University of Texas Medical Branch.

Arch Intern Med. 1961;107(5):754-772. doi:10.1001/archinte.1961.03620050120014

In recent years certain disorders associated with marked intolerance to cold have received considerable attention. There is no generally accepted terminology or classification of cold sensitivity syndromes, and furthermore, cold intolerance has not been previously considered as a clinical entity. Following exposure to cold, affected patients commonly exhibit several of the following signs and symptoms: cyanosis, numbness, Raynaud's phenomenon; urticaria, purpura of skin and mucous membranes; vascular occlusions resulting in visual disturbances, deafness, or pulmonary infarctions; ulceration, necrosis, gangrene; hemolytic anemia, hemoglobinuria; rigors and fever.2,3,66,184 Seasonal exacerbations and remissions are characteristic. The term cryopathy is suggested as an all-inclusive term for these clinical conditions.1,184 Presently available diagnostic and therapeutic methods make possible a reasonably precise differentiation between the various entities. The following etiological classification of cryopathies is suggested:

  • Cryoglobulinemias

  • Cryofibrinogenemias

  • Paroxysmal cold hemoglobinurias:

    1. Cold agglutinin syndrome

    2. Cold hemolysin syndrome

  • Cold intolerance in

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