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Name: Veronika
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Question:
The other day I jammed my ring finger in a door. And the few days after it was at a different temperature then the rest of my fingers. I was wondering why. It was noticibly, to me, warmer.



Replies:
Your finger was inflammed. The process of inflammation is part of your non-specific immune response. This means that when a foreign substance or injury happens, a series of reactions occurs. The signs of inflammation are swelling, heat, redness and pain. To help healing your body sends out chemicals to signal white blood cells and other cells to come to the area. To speed this, the capillaries dilate to allow blood to travel to the area faster. This causes swelling and the extra (warm) blood causes the warmth. The cells also secrete substances called pyrogens ("fire-producing" in Greek) that cause heat to be produced in the area. The extra swelling and pressure can cause pain. So be assured that this is your body's built-in way of helping you heal.

Van Hoeck


The first response your immune system makes to infection and damage is inflammation and this is what you experienced. The same thing happens when you contract a cold. It is the opeinng of capillaries and arterioles of the damaged area in order to faciliate the non-specific immune response. Flooding the area with blood will give the sensation of being warmer. normally, your extrmeities are cooler becasue the blood is not that near the surface of the skin.

Steve Sample



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