Cryoglobulins: Understanding the pieces, the pipe and the reason to “Stay Warm”.
Cryoglobulins: As the name implies and science tells us, exposure to cold causes cryoglobulin precipitation, which thickens our blood. But which then reabsorb when our body feels itself warm enough, restoring normal viscosity. Viscosity is important. It affects flow. Think pouring water vs. pouring honey. Thicker blood means reduced flow. Reduced flow means less oxygen available to brain, muscles, organs etc.
The Size of the Blood Vessel Matters: Capillaries and small veins may have normal flow with normal blood but may be too small for “thicker” or cryoglobulin clogged blood to pass through. Because of friction, any pumped fluid in any pipe will be stationary at the inner wall of the pipe, effectively “coating it”. And reducing the bore. This is particularly true of small bore size and liquids like blood which are composed of many different size and shape cells. Also the roughness of the pipe wall will affect build up.
Cryoprecipitation: Cryoglobulins also like to clump together and can block the blood vessel or the pipework. So basically, struggling on without sufficient regard to “warming up opportunities” implies ongoing un-reabsorbed Cryoglobulins and ongoing fatigue, aches and pains, ongoing lining of vessel walls impairing their access to blood and possibly no flow in smaller veins.
The first doctor I saw about having cryoglobulinemia said “Stay Warm.
“Stay warm” is rather under stating the issue I think!
Perhaps he should have said:
“Avoid body heat loss but if that fails a quick overheat followed by a suitable period of comfortable warmth will restore normality and avoid the repercussions of thick blood”!
For those of you saying “ increased pressure gives more flow and what about my high blood pressure?” Blood pressure is mostly controlled by pipework dilating or constricting, not heart rate! This information surprised me too! Ultimately, taking the time and effort to enable Cryoglobulinss to reabsorb might be beneficial in all sorts of ways.
My Personal Experiment: Over the last 18 months I’ve been taking my blood oxygen saturation readings when feeling ill after a cold exposure. They have consistently read quite low compared to when well. And the worse I feel the lower the oxygen saturation, which (to me) confirms the thick blood/slower flow theory. These days I don’t dress to avoid cold exposure, more just to enable a steady body temp that might give my Cryoglobulins a better chance of reabsorbing, rather than being provoked, throughout the whole day.