LIFESTYLE & COMMUNITY

What Causes Swollen Feet And Ankles: 8 Possible Health Problems From Blood Clots To Kidney Failure

Date October 23, 2019 19:45

Swollen feet and ankles are common and it may occur due to many reasons. Although swelling often is simply a result of standing or sitting for too long and improves with rest, swollen feet can also be serious, especially if you have other symptoms and an existing health condition.

What causes swollen ankles and what causes swollen feet

Below is a list of a few possible causes of swollen feet and legs.

1. Sitting or standing for extended periods of time

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If your job involves sitting or standing all day, you may experience swollen feet when the day is over. In this case, swelling can be improved with rest and taking a foot bath. Place a pillow or two under your legs when lying down for greater relief.

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2. Pregnancy

It's normal for pregnant women to have swollen feet and legs, especially in the third trimester. But if the swelling is sudden and is accompanied by a severe headache, nausea, and passing too little urine, it can be a sign of a dangerous condition called preeclampsia, which warrants calling a doctor as soon as possible.

3. Injury to the foot or leg

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Swollen ankles and feet can result from an injury, such as a sprained ankle. If you notice a swelling in your foot, ankle, or leg after a fall, misstep, or blow, contact your doctor, especially if the pain is present even when there is no pressure on the affected body part.

4. Use of certain medicines

Leg and foot swelling can develop as a side effect of certain medicines. These include tricyclic antidepressants, diabetes medicines, steroids, and calcium channel blockers used to treat high blood pressure.

READ ALSO: Knee Pain: 8 Common Causes, How To Relieve It At Home, And When To See A Doctor

5. Lymphedema

Lymphedema is a term for swelling which occurs as a result of a blockage somewhere in the lymphatic system.

6. Blood clot

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Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), a condition in which a blood clot forms in a deep vein in your leg, is a medical emergency. In DVT, the affected leg is usually swollen, red, painful, and warm to the touch.

7. Liver, heart, or kidney failure

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Failure of one of these organs causes fluid retention, which in turn leads to swollen legs and feet. If you have a known heart, liver, or kidney condition and have developed leg and feet swelling, report this symptom to your doctor immediately.

8. Infection

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Swelling can be caused by an infection affecting your foot or leg. If the swelling is accompanied by a skin lesion, pain, and/or changes in skin color in the affected area, get medical help as soon as possible.

As you can see swollen feet, ankles and legs can be caused by different health problems, so it is better to consult with your doctor if you notice swollen legs, swollen ankles or swollen feet.

READ ALSO: Plantar Fasciitis: 7 Home Remedies To Alleviate Discomfort And Pain


This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.

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