REVIEW – January 2018

Paroxysmal finger haematoma or Acherbach syndrome – an underestimated medical condition


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Paroxysmal finger haematoma, called also spontaneous finger haematoma, or the Achenbach syndrome, is a benign phenomenon, frequently affecting women over 40 years of age. It is characterized by an unexpected sudden onset of swelling of fingers with a subsequent appearance of deep echymoses predominately on the volar side of proxymal phalanges. It is associated with pain, oedema and paresthesia. The median time of resolution of symptoms is three days. The recurrence of episodes is variable: from two to three or more times during a year. The pathogenesis of the syndrome is unknown, the patients have no history of trauma. Clinical examination of patients, various blood tests and Doppler sonography do not reveal any phathological changes. The discoloration of fingers in the case of the Achenbach syndrome has a clearly different distribution compared to that of an ishaemic finger where the tip of the digit is involved.