What is Causing Your Swollen Legs?

Leg swelling is caused by the retention of fluid in leg tissues, and is known as peripheral edema. Peripheral edema can be caused by a problem with the circulatory system, the lymphatic system, or the kidneys. It is estimated that approximately 4.4 million people in USA suffer from some type of edema.

Types of Edema

There are many different types of edema, the most common being:

  • Peripheral edema – in the feet, ankles, legs, hands, and arms
  • Cerebral edema – in and around the brain
  • Eye edema – in and around the eyes

What causes edema?

If the capillaries (tiny blood vessels) leak fluid into the surrounding tissue, the area will start to swell. This leading may be due to capillary damage or increased pressure.

Leaking capillaries will cause the kidneys to accumulate higher than normal quantities of sodium and water in order to compensate for the capillary fluid loss. This results in more blood circulating in the body, causing even more capillary leakage into the surrounding tissue and additional swelling occurs; a vicious cycle.

Other causes of edema are:

  • Prolonged standing or sitting (physical inactivity), especially in the heat
  • Severe chronic (long-term) lung diseases
  • Genetics
  • Kidney failure or chronic kidney disease
  • Recent surgery
  • Cirrhosis (scarring of the liver)
  • Burns
  • Weak valves inside the veins of the legs
  • High altitudes
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Pregnancy
  • Low protein levels
  • Menstruation, menopause, or hormone therapy
  • Medications

Nonemergency problems related to leg swelling still need prompt attention and care. Leg swelling can be caused by a number of conditions, some potentially serious. If you are experiencing any type of leg swelling make an appointment as soon as possible so that your doctor can assess and diagnose the cause.

Treatment of edema often means treating the underlying cause of edema. If you are experiencing aching legs, leg pain, or even a ruptured varicose vein, make an appointment today with our expert leg pain specialists at Lakeshore Veins . We use high-end laser technologies to stop leg swelling and to treat other vein diseases. With varicose vein removal, our specialists provide quick, comprehensive, painless solutions, in a spa-like atmosphere. Call (262) 241-3999 or Contact Us Online to schedule your treatment for ruptured varicose vein and to provide relief to you annoying leg pain. Relief may be a simple procedure away!

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