Why are my legs and ankles swollen?

Why are my legs and ankles swollen?

DEAR DOCTOR:
Why are my legs and ankles swollen?

DEAR READER:
Swelling of the legs from a buildup of extra fluid is known as edema. In addition to the swelling, the skin above the swollen area is stretched and shiny. Your doctor can easily check for edema by gently pressing a finger over your foot, ankle or leg with slow, steady pressure. If you have edema, you will see an indentation where the doctor pressed.

Swelling of the legs and ankles is usually not serious. However, it can be caused by diseases of the heart, lungs, liver and kidney.

Where does the extra fluid come from? About 60 percent of our body weight is from water. The water is in three “spaces.” Most is in the space inside each cell. Some is in the space between our cells. The rest is in the space inside our blood vessels and a few other locations. Water passes back and forth between these spaces.

The presence of edema means that there is more fluid than normal in the space between the cells. Usually, this extra fluid comes from the fluid inside the blood vessels.

Edema of any cause is often worst in the legs and ankles. When we’re sitting or standing, gravity pulls the water inside blood vessels downward. That raises pressure inside the blood vessels, which pushes water out into the space between the cells.

The two most common causes of leg and ankle swelling are:

1.prolonged standing or sitting, especially in hot weather;
2.weakness of tiny valves inside the veins of the legs.
The weakened valves make it more difficult for the veins to pump blood back to the heart. As a result, water leaks out of the veins and into the space between the cells.

Pregnancy can cause edema in the legs. The baby and uterus press on the veins carrying blood from the legs to the heart. Like weakened valves in leg veins, this causes water to leak out of the veins and into the space between the cells. Fluid retention during pregnancy also can be caused by a more serious condition called pre-eclampsia.

One serious cause of leg and ankle swelling in adults is congestive heart failure. When the heart is not pumping efficiently, some blood pools in the veins of the legs (again, because of gravity), and water leaks into the space between the cells.

Another cause is low protein levels in the blood, often the result of malnutrition or kidney and liver disease. This produces swelling not only in the legs and ankles but everywhere; puffy eyes and face are common.

A more serious cause of swelling in the legs and ankles, and in the face, is a seriously underactive thyroid gland.

Tomorrow’s we’ll discuss what your doctor should do to diagnose the cause of your edema, and what you and your doctor should do to treat it. more  

Thanks Raja Sahib. more  
Thank you Raja Sahib for your two posts on the problem of edema. I am sure all our senior citizens would be benefitted. It is rare that a Doctor would take that much of a pain to explain the problem to his patient. more  
WALIA SAHEB. NOT TO DISAPPOINT YOU AND TO KEEP UP MY COMMITMENT. THE 2ND PART HAS BEEN POSTED TODAY. BEST REGARDS. more  
RAJA SAHIB- LOT OF THANKS AND WAITING FOR TOMORROW FOR THE NEXT SESSION AND FURTHER TALK ON THIS EDEMA.
DURGA PRASAD- SPECIAL THANKS TO YOU FOR GIVING THE TREATMENT AS WELL. more  
Very helpful Raja Sahib. A very useful and least dangerous (in terms of side effects etc) is a Biochemic drug called Natrum Sulf 6X. This medicine can be taken for a few days for reduction of edema. There are more medicines for the edema of face, lower lids, upper lids and other parts of the body, which should be prescribed after proper analysis of the probem. Above medicine can be taken for a period of ten days and a proper doctor should be consulted if there is no improvement. Natrum Sulf (Sodium Sulphate) has the property of throwing out excess water from the system. more  
Post a Comment

Related Posts

    • Secrets of Longevity

      Whales have heart rates @2/minute while in water and it's up by 4 while out of water,while hunting. Humans have heart rates between 60-80 and athletic people or others who believe in reg...

      By Dr. Neelam Nath
      /
    • Healthy cholesterol

      Can we run our vehicle without good oil? Why do we get our vehicles serviced, get filter & oil changed after driving few thousands of Kilometers? Cholesterol is a type of fat found i...

      By Neelam Nath
      /
    • Alkaline diet

      If you are in your 30s or know someone who is in their 30s, then it is important to understand that alkaline diet hams none and helps everyone without being a burden on the pocket. Dr Otto Warburg,...

      By Neelam Nath
      /
    • Foods as blood thinners

      Foods As Blood Thinners Dr. Neelam Nath Bhatia Dr. Neelam Nath BhatiaGeneral Physician 9 September, 2019 Cardiac patients are given blood thinners so that bloo...

      By Neelam Nath
      /
    • Chelation therapy

      is Chelation therapy advisable for reducing blocks

      By Swarnalatha Marjee
      /
    • BP fluctuation during day

      How does blood pressure fluctuate during the day? Is it quite high before lunch. Experts please advise.

      By Sneha Goyal
      /
    • Erroneously high BP measurement mistakes

      AHA lists 7 common mistakes leading to erroneously high BP measurement . 1 .Having a full bladder can add 10-15 points to your reading. 2 .Slouching, unsupported back or feet....

      By Sneha Goyal
      /
    • Hypertension

      Hypertension is a systolic blood pressure equal to or greater than 140mm of Hg or diastolic pressure equal to or greater then 90 mm of hg. Features of Hypertension: 1. Headach...

      By Pritam Sharma
      /
    • 101 year old cardiologist

      India's first lady Cardiologist, Dr. Padmawati Sivaramakrishna Iyer turned 101yrs on 20th June 2018. She is director of the National Heart Institute, Delhi and the founder president of the A...

      By Sneha Goyal
      /
    • Good evening friends

      4 Nuts That Cut Your Heart Disease Risk. Recently, I set up an experiment in a grocery store. I placed four nut mixes on a shelf. Each was labeled differently. One promoted men’s h...

      By Dr.(Mrs.)Chandra Kanta Gosain
      /
    • KNOW YOUR HEART

      25 Facts About THE Heart that WILL Leave you Stunned. Here are 25 facts you may not have known about your incredible heart ~ Every day you are alive, your heart creates enough...

      By Dr.(Mrs.)Chandra Kanta Gosain
      /
Share
Enter your email & mobile number and we will send you the instructions

Note - The email can sometime gets delivered to the spam folder, so the instruction will be send to your mobile as well

Please select a Circle that you want people to invite to.
Invite to
(Maximum 500 email ids allowed.)