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Know in detail about the causes, signs, and symptoms of swollen legs



It is a medical condition that occurs due to fluids trapped in the tissues of different body parts. Usually, the legs, ankles, and feet are the most affected parts. Swelling in the legs is rather a common problem and more often than not affects pregnant women and the elderly. People above the age of sixty-five are more at risk than compared to anyone else. While this condition in pregnant women is temporary and goes soon after the delivery, other patients might suffer for the longer term.

This disease solely happens because of less or no movement and can be easily prevented by adopting a few lifestyle changes. Walking and being active throughout the day helps the process of blood circulation in the body thoroughly. It is also noted that if the patient is still for a long period of time, he/she gets more uncomfortable and a little walking helps. This condition is also called Edema.

Swollen legs causes


There can be a variety of reasons for swelling in your legs and not just one. Swollen leg syndrome is noticed the most in people who do not walk or are not able to walk because of some reason. Also, the people who work for long hours sitting and do not move around much also suffer from the same. This happens because when one is sitting or standing for a longer period, the gravity attracts the water down thus causing swelling.

Another important cause of this disorder is the insufficiency of your valves. Valves are the part of veins that push the blood from body parts back to the heart. When the valve is not strong enough, then it becomes hard for the veins to perform their basic function. That is why the blood gets deposited then and there and the legs swell up.

If the patient has any prior medical condition then that may also be a reason for the swelling. Some conditions have swelling in body parts as a symptom. Side effects from some drugs or poor nutrition can also be a proven cause of this disease. One more significant cause of swollen legs is pregnancy. Pregnant women also suffer from the same condition as the uterus applying more pressure than usual to the lower half of the body resulting in swelling in the ankle, legs, and feet.

Swollen legs symptoms


Swollen legs symptoms typically include swelling in the body part. Swollen legs is caused due to fluid deposition as the veins are not able or strong enough to transport the blood back to the heart. Hence, the blood stays where it was and causes swelling.

Although, the symptoms of swollen legs are easy to understand but if one is facing difficulties he can try by pushing the skin inside. If the skin is pitting then it is swollen. Along with this, the patient can also detect if that part of the body is looking larger than before. Swollen skin also looks more stretchy and shiny. Another symptom is difficulty in walking. If the legs are swollen it will affect the feet as well which will make it difficult to walk for the patient.

Some other points to look for may include mild pain in body parts preferably the legs and ankles. One may also feel difficulty in breathing and tightness in the area of swelling.

Swollen legs treatment


If the condition is diagnosed, it can be treated.  Elevation theory is considered to be the best-swollen legs treatment. If the patient has a lot of swelling and difficulties then he should try to elevate that area above ground level. The ankle plays an important role in reducing the swelling and hence it should be at a minimum distance of twelve inches from the ground. This way the blood can easily go back to the heart.

Another proven treatment is walking. Walking initiates the contractions of the calves’ muscles resulting in proper blood circulation and not any deposition. If the patient is not in the state of walking, then medical compression stockings can come in handy. One thing that should be properly taken care of is that the stockings should not be easy to wear or remove. One must put a little effort to wear and take them off.

An ultrasound test can also be taken to find out the position and functioning of the veins in the affected area. If the veins are somehow blocked or the blood is clotted then it can be treated either by using blood thinners or by the process of removal.



Swelling in the legs is a common condition and can be easily treated with the help of a proper diagnosis. One must get themselves examined in the sitting and standing position.

Medanta Medical Team
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