Swelling in the lower limbs is caused by a buildup of fluid in the soft tissues of the feet and ankles. Fluids may build up for a variety of reasons. When the foot or ankle is injured, bleeding into a joint may cause immediate swelling, in addition to bruising and pain. Similarly, an increase in synovial fluid in a joint, following an injury such as an ankle sprain, can cause swelling, though this type of swelling is delayed and builds up slowly over time. Certain medical conditions, such as gout, kidney disease, heart problems, arthritis, liver disease, deep vein thrombosis, venous insufficiency, cellulitis, and lymphedema also cause lower limb swelling. If you are pregnant, you are likely to experience foot and ankle swelling due to fluid retention from pregnancy hormones. If you suffer from lower limb swelling, it is suggested that you seek the care of a podiatrist, who can help you find the cause of the swelling and prescribe the appropriate treatments.
When dealing with systemic disease of the feet, it is extremely important to check the affected areas routinely so that any additional problems are caught quickly. If you have any concerns about your feet and ankles contact Kenneth J. D'Ortone, DPM from Center for Foot and Ankle Excellence. Our doctor will assist you with all of your podiatric needs.
Systemic Diseases of the Feet
Systemic diseases affect the whole body, and symptoms usually are displayed in the feet. This condition can make a patient’s ability to walk unbearable. Systemic diseases include gout, diabetes mellitus, neurological disorders, and arthritis.
Gout – is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Common symptoms include pain, inflammation, and redness at the metatarsal/phalangeal joint of the base big toe. Gout can be treated by NSAIDs to relieve pain and inflammation, and other drugs that lower the acid levels in the body.
Diabetes mellitus – is an increase in the level of blood sugar that the body cannot counteract with its own insulin. Failure to produce enough insulin is a factor in Diabetes.
Diabetes of the Feet
Diabetic Neuropathy – may lead to damaged nerves and affect the feet through numbness and loss of sensation.
Peripheral Vascular Disease – can restrict the blood flow to the feet, and often times lead to amputation of the feet.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact our office located in Philadelphia, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.Read more about Systemic Diseases of the Foot