Edema legs pictures: Edema Definition, Causes, Treatments, Pictures & Symptoms
Stasis Dermatitis in Adults: Condition, Treatments, and Pictures – Overview
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Images of Dermatitis, Stasis
Dermatitis is a term used to describe irritation of the skin with scaling, rough or dry skin, redness, itching, and sometimes oozing, crusts, and erosions. Stasis is a term used to describe leg swelling seen in conditions of poor circulation and fluid buildup.
Stasis dermatitis is skin irritation and breakdown due to the fluid accumulating under the skin.
Stasis dermatitis can be due to venous insufficiency (vein valve malfunction), heart failure, and other conditions that cause swelling, usually in the legs, but sometimes in other areas as well.
Who’s at risk?
In the US, stasis dermatitis occurs in 6–7% of those over the age 50. The risk of developing stasis dermatitis increases with age. Women are slightly more likely to be affected, perhaps due to the effect of pregnancy on the leg vein system.
When seen in younger people, it is usually due to surgery, trauma, or a history of deep vein blood clots or repeated infections.
Signs and Symptoms
Itching and red, dry areas are usually the first signs of stasis dermatitis. The inside ankle area is often first affected, gradually involving the lower leg up to the knee. The skin may appear shiny or have reddish-brown patches.
Swelling (edema) is usually present, but in chronic cases of stasis dermatitis, there is gradual tightening and scarring of the skin leading to hard and sometimes tender areas.
In severe cases of stasis dermatitis, the skin breaks down with oozing, crusted areas and ulceration. White, shiny scars are often left after healing.
In long-standing cases, there may be significant thickening and darkening of the skin from rubbing.
The most important step is to correct the underlying problem causing the fluid buildup. It is also important to understand that the condition is usually a chronic one requiring ongoing care for the rest of one’s life.
If the stasis dermatitis is mild and clearly related to leg swelling, which is minimal upon arising in the morning but worse after a day of standing, simple measures can assist the veins and reduce the chance of progression of the disease, requiring medical care.
These steps include:
- Wearing elastic support hose (worn to at least knee height) should be put on in the morning upon arising. Many non-prescription and attractive styles are available for men and women. Although they are initially tight, discomfort is less as the swelling is controlled.
- Raising the legs above the level of the heart when sitting reduces fluid buildup.
- Applying 1% hydrocortisone cream (available over the counter) to the red, itchy areas twice daily.
- Practicing a proper skin-care routine, which includes using only mild soaps or cleansers and applying a moisturizer (such as petrolatum) after each bath on the legs.
- Avoiding the use of other creams or topical antibiotics, as allergic reactions are common.
When to Seek Medical Care
If the leg swelling does not respond to simple support hose, see the doctor to look for the underlying cause of the swelling. Also seek help if the itchy areas do not improve with self-care.
Evidence of infection includes pain, fever, increased swelling and redness, or open areas accompanied by pus.
Ulcers or sores require medical attention.
Treatments Your Physician May Prescribe
The doctor will do an exam to determine the cause of the swelling; vein studies may be suggested and, rarely, a culture or skin biopsy may be done. Compression stockings (a specially designed stocking that applies pressure to the leg to prevent fluid from pooling) may be recommended.
Stronger corticosteroid creams may be used for short periods (not prolonged periods, however, due to the possible thinning of the skin from chronic use). Infection may be treated with oral or intravenous antibiotics. Oral medications may be used to control heart failure or reduce the presence of fluid.
MedlinePlus: Skin ConditionsClinical Information and Differential Diagnosis of Dermatitis, Stasis
Bolognia, Jean L., ed. Dermatology, pp.219-221. New York: Mosby, 2003.
Freedberg, Irwin M., ed. Fitzpatrick’s Dermatology in General Medicine. 6th ed, pp.2337, 2360. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2003.
What is Dependent Edema? (with pictures)
Dependent edema is a condition in which there is an accumulation of fluid underneath the skin that causes abnormal swelling. This usually happens in areas of the body that are lower than the heart. The most common sites for dependent edema are the arms, legs, and ankles. There are several health factors that can cause this type of swelling.
The most common cause of dependent edema is congestive heart failure. This is a condition in which the muscles of the heart become too weak to effectively pump blood throughout the body. A symptom of congestive heart failure is swelling of the lower legs and ankles. If an individual with congestive heart failure does not get treatment for this condition, it could produce more serious symptoms.
Pulmonary edema is a more severe symptom of congestive heart failure. When an individual develops pulmonary edema, fluid can build up in the lungs and cause severe shortness of breath. If this condition is allowed to escalate it can become a medical emergency. Some people who experience pulmonary edema may need breathing tubes inserted into their lungs so their bodies can receive sufficient oxygen.
Another cause of dependent edema can be damage to the kidneys. The kidneys are responsible for removing excess waste and fluid from the body. When the kidneys become damaged, this can cause swelling as the fluid builds up in the body. High blood pressure and diabetes are both chronic conditions that can damage the kidneys.
There are treatments for this type of edema. The first thing an individual should do is to keep the swollen extremity elevated. This is the simplest way to reduce the swelling and to help fluid move back through the heart where it can be expelled from the body. An individual who suffers from swelling of the ankles and lower legs should avoid standing for long periods of time. This same individual should wear tight stockings called compression stockings to keep fluid from collecting in the lower extremities.
If the dependent edema is caused by a heart condition certain medications can help. An individual may take a medication that will control the heart rate or the rhythm. This can help the heart pump the blood through the body more effectively and reduce swelling. These types of medications are usually taken with a medication that increases the elimination of fluid from the body. It does this by pulling excess fluid from the cells to the kidneys where it can be eliminated.
If the edema is caused by kidney failure, it may be necessary for the affected individual to receive dialysis. This is a procedure in which the individual is connected to a machine that performs the same function as the kidneys. During dialysis, the machine will filter out excess fluid and waste and replace it with healthy fluid. An individual on dialysis may need a kidney transplant to be able to function normally again.
Leg Swelling in COPD: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment
With chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), you may develop peripheral edema (fluid retention), which is swelling of the feet, ankles, and legs. Leg swelling can limit your activity and be physically uncomfortable. It is also a sign of advancing COPD.
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As COPD begins to impair your lungs and heart, your circulation is eventually affected and edema develops. Besides COPD, there are also other causes of edema, so you will need a medical evaluation for your leg swelling even if you have already been diagnosed with COPD.
Medications and lifestyle strategies can help reduce leg edema. And since edema is a sign that your COPD may be progressing, you could also need your COPD treatments adjusted.
Leg swelling in COPD can start gradually, and it is more noticeable after you have been sitting with your legs down or walking for a while. Leg edema may improve when you raise your feet or lie down, so some people notice decreased swelling in the morning when waking up.
Symptoms of COPD-associated edema include:
- Puffiness of the feet, ankles, and lower legs
- Itchiness or tenderness of the feet and legs
- Pitting (an indentation of the swelling) from your socks and shoes
- Feet becoming too large for shoes that used to fit
- Pitting that lasts for up to a minute after you press on the swollen area
- Decreased leg swelling when you lift your feet
Edema from COPD is typically symmetrical, affecting both legs just about equally. If your lower extremity edema is unequal, this is a sign that you could have another serious problem—and you should get medical attention promptly.
If edema is due to your COPD, you are likely to also have other symptoms of advanced COPD such as:
- Shortness of breath during routine activities
- Lightheadedness, especially during exertion
While it isn’t common, COPD can also cause edema in the hands, arms, or abdomen. This is a sign of severe COPD-associated right heart failure. As with leg edema, the swelling should be symmetrical if it is caused by COPD.
Edema can also rapidly worsen. Life-threatening COPD symptoms that can occur along with progressive edema include:
- Bluish-colored lips or skin (a sign your blood isn’t carrying enough oxygen)
- Severe shortness of breath, even at rest
- A rapid heart rate
- Fluctuating blood pressure
- Chest pain
Seek urgent medical attention if you develop any of the above symptoms.
Leg swelling in COPD is a complex process associated with several factors involving your lungs, heart, oxygen level, kidneys, and fluid balance.
In general, edema is associated with advanced COPD, but there isn’t necessarily a strict correlation between the severity of your disease and the extent of leg swelling. For example, you can have end-stage COPD without leg swelling, and you can have leg swelling with mild COPD (especially if you also have kidney disease).
Among the contributors to peripheral edema in COPD are interrelated medical conditions that can be caused by this respiratory disease:
- Pulmonary hypertension occurs when lung disease causes high pressure in the blood vessels of the lungs. As a consequence, the right side of your heart (which moves blood between the heart and lungs) has to work a lot harder to pump.
- Cor pulmonale: Right-sided heart failure may develop due to pulmonary hypertension. With cor pulmonale, blood can get backed up in the veins throughout your body. As fluid leaks into the surrounding tissues, edema develops. Due to the effects of gravity, fluid starts to pool in the lowest parts of your body—your feet, ankles, and legs—and makes them swell.
Peripheral edema is usually diagnosed with noninvasive examinations. Your doctor will look to see if the skin is swollen. If a dimple or pit forms after lightly pressing on the area for 15 seconds, this is described as pitting edema.
Pitting edema can be caused by other conditions, however. For example, venous insufficiency can cause pitting edema in both legs, resembling the leg edema associated with COPD.
If you are not able to maintain regular physical activity because of your COPD, you might also gain weight. Oftentimes, it can be difficult to distinguish edema from weight gain.
And a deep vein thrombosis (DVT) can cause pitting or non-pitting edema on one side of the body.
If the edema is non-pitting, it could be caused by other illnesses, such as thyroid disease or lymph node drainage issues. And asymmetric edema is typically caused by physical pressure, which may occur due to a tumor or an injury.
Your medical team may order some tests to distinguish COPD-associated edema from other types of swelling.
As part of your evaluation, your doctor will take your blood pressure and measure your blood oxygen saturation level to assess your heart and lung function. You may also need a chest X-ray or computerized tomography (CT) to evaluate your lungs. Your doctor may order an echocardiogram to assess your heart function.
And if there is concern about the blood flow in your legs (or arms), you may also have a venous ultrasound, which is a non-invasive evaluation of blood flow in your extremities.
While there is not a cure for COPD, pulmonary hypertension, or cor pulmonale, medical and surgical treatments may prevent worsening. Fluid management is an important part of the treatment for leg edema in COPD, and it involves lifestyle strategies as well as medication.
Medications that can help reduce edema include diuretic prescriptions, which trigger the elimination of fluid in the urine.
A few things that you can do at home to help reduce leg swelling in COPD are:
- Rest with your feet up: You might notice the swelling going down when you lift your feet up at the same level as your heart (or higher).
- Wear compression stockings: These supportive socks may also help reduce the pooling of blood in your feet and ankles. You can usually purchase a pair at your local drugstore.
- Keep up with hydration: Your fluid intake is a tricky thing when you have COPD-associated leg edema, so you need to closely follow your doctor’s instructions when it comes to fluids. Excess fluid can cause edema if your kidneys can’t catch up with urine production. But not drinking enough water may also promote swelling if your kidneys retain excess fluid to prevent dehydration.
- Restrict salt: Your salt intake can affect the edema in your legs. Salt concentration is very carefully managed by your kidneys, so too little or too much salt can result in swelling or dehydration.
- Get regular exercise: Staying active can help your lung and heart function in COPD, and maintain healthier circulation.
A Word From Verywell
Swelling in your feet, ankles, and legs could be a sign of a serious complication of COPD, and it’s important to see your doctor about it. There are, however, other causes of leg edema, and a full diagnostic evaluation is necessary. You might need to make some adjustments to your dietary salt and fluid. With proper treatment, you can stay active and reduce leg swelling caused by COPD.
Caring for a Senior With Edema
For most people, a little weight gain or minor swelling in certain areas of the body might not seem like a reason to seek medical help. However, for elderly or chronically ill individuals, these could be signs of edema, an often misunderstood and potentially serious condition.
Once called dropsy, edema can be minor or severe, localized or generalized, and have any number of causes. Edema in elderly individuals is frequently caused by an underlying condition, such as kidney damage, heart failure, chronic lung disease, liver disease or even arthritis. Specifically, the condition occurs when excess fluid leaks out of small blood vessels and is trapped in the surrounding tissues following an injury, surgical procedure, allergic reaction or change in the body’s chemical composition.
Types of Edema
While there are various kinds of edema, the most common is peripheral edema. This occurs in the extremities, producing swollen legs, swollen ankles, swollen feet, and even swelling of the hands and arms. Generalized edema refers to fluid retention that affects the entire body, but this condition may still appear to primarily affect the extremities thanks to the force of gravity. Other types are classified according to the specific organ or system that is affected. For example, pulmonary edema occurs when fluid accumulates in the lungs, lymphedema presents when the lymphatic system is not functioning properly, and corneal edema involves fluid retention in the cornea, affecting vision.
Edema in Older Adults
Seniors are typically at a higher risk of edema due to lower activity levels, increased incidence of multiple chronic health conditions, and the amount and types of medications they take. While the above examples are a bit specific, it is important for family caregivers to understand the general symptoms and possible causes of edema to prevent the development of serious complications, some of which can be life threatening.
Symptoms of Edema in the Elderly
Knowing what to look for can be half the battle. General symptoms include:
- Swelling or puffiness of the skin
- Skin that appears stretched, shiny or discolored
- Aching body parts
- Stiff joints
- Weight changes
- Skin that maintains a dimple after being pressed for a few seconds (known as pitting edema)
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Causes of Edema
This condition can result from several different contributing health factors. Common causes include physical inactivity, standing or sitting still for too long, hereditary predisposition, surgery, high altitudes, heat, burns, menopause, and excessive salt intake or an unhealthy diet. It often emerges as a result of leaking capillaries which seep fluid into the surrounding tissues, producing swelling.
In rarer cases, low albumin, a protein in the blood that affects how capillaries function, and high blood pressure can both contribute to this. Any obstructions in the body that affect the circulation of fluids like lymph and blood can inhibit drainage and lead to swelling as well. Examples of this include blood clots and tumors. Edema is also a common symptom of heart disease, liver damage and kidney disease.
Certain medications can cause fluid retention, which can be doubly problematic for a patient who is affected by any of the conditions mentioned above. Calcium channel blockers, NSAIDs (ibuprofen, Aspirin, Naproxen, etc.), corticosteroids, and some anti-diabetic drugs can all cause swelling. Prescriptions used to treat Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease, such as pramipexole and memantine respectively, can also cause fluid buildup in the body.
What Happens if Edema Is Left Untreated?
It is important to seek medical attention in treating edema. If left untreated, it could result in painful swelling, difficulty walking, stiffness, stretched/itchy skin, scarring, poor blood circulation, and reduced elasticity in arteries, veins, and joints. Extreme swelling, often in the feet, ankles and legs, can lead to skin ulcers (wounds), weeping edema and dangerous skin infections like cellulitis. Family caregivers who suspect edema should address the concern immediately with a physician. Some medication changes may be in order to get a loved one’s condition under control.
In some cases, edema can be a symptom of a dangerous underlying condition. Contact a doctor immediately if a senior with a heart or lung condition begins having trouble breathing, having chest pains, coughing and/or feeling fatigued. These may be signs of pulmonary edema, which requires swift treatment.
If a senior is largely sedentary, has recently undergone surgery, or has a blood clotting condition, persistent swelling and pain in one area, typically in the foot or leg, may indicate a blood clot in a deep vein. This condition is called deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and can be fatal if the blood clot travels to the lungs, causing a pulmonary embolism.
How Is Edema Treated?
Of course, treating the underlying cause of a senior’s edema is the primary objective. Managing chronic conditions like heart disease and kidney disease will help minimize swelling and the likelihood of complications. In severe cases, diuretics like furosemide (Lasix) may be used to promote removal of excess fluid through urination. While these medications are effective, they can also deplete the body of important vitamins and minerals, so a healthy diet and physician supervision are crucial during their use.
How Family Caregivers Can Help Seniors Manage Edema
There are several minor lifestyle adjustments that can have a significant beneficial effect on a patient who is prone to edema. Caregivers should help their loved ones adhere to these guidelines, which can prevent discomfort and serious complications.
Serving Healthy, Low-Sodium Meals
Some foods naturally possess diuretic properties that can help balance fluid buildup, such as asparagus, parsley, beets, grapes, green beans, leafy greens, pineapple, pumpkin, onion, leeks and garlic. Aside from their diuretic effects, these foods are also excellent sources of vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants.
A low-sodium diet is important for maintaining cardiovascular health and minimizing water retention as well. Encourage your loved one to use fresh herbs, citrus, and other sodium-free condiments and seasonings on their food to add flavor instead of reaching for the saltshaker. Be sure to read nutrition labels carefully when purchasing foods as well, since sodium is hiding in everything these days. Keep in mind that current Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend a daily maximum of 2,300 mg of sodium for adults. While the body needs salt to function properly, a physician or dietician can help you and your loved one devise a balanced and nutritious low-sodium diet that will help combat swelling.
Assisting With Compression Therapy
If your loved one has a specific limb or area that is affected by edema, it could be beneficial for them to wear a compression stocking, sleeve or glove. Placing added pressure on the area during the day can prevent fluid from collecting there. These products come in a range of compression levels and it is important to work with a physician to make sure the product fits properly and provides the right amount of pressure. These garments can be difficult to put on and take time to get used to, but they should never be painful or uncomfortable. Work with your loved one’s doctor to learn how to help put compression socks or other items on someone else, or look for products like compression stocking aids to make the process easier. Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover compression socks in most cases, even if a doctor prescribes them.
Carefully Consider Massage Therapy
Targeted application of pressure through massage can help circulate excess fluid that has pooled in the extremities. A method known as manual lymphatic drainage can be helpful for individuals who suffer from lymphedema. Be sure to consult a doctor before seeing a licensed medical massage therapist. Individuals who have high blood pressure, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or are prone to blood clots should take extreme caution when considering massage. Pressure incurred during a session could potentially loosen plaque from the artery walls and release blood clots that could end up in the heart, lungs or brain. Seniors with fragile or thin skin are not ideal candidates for massage either.
Ensure Proper Skin Care
Even if your loved one’s edema is under control, it can still cause a great deal of discomfort and affect their skin integrity. Be sure to keep the affected areas clean, dry, well-conditioned, and protected with shoes or clothing to avoid cracking, splitting and injuries. Not only are these injuries painful, but they can also become infected very easily.
Resting with the affected limb(s) above the heart can help prevent pooling and improve circulation. It can be difficult to get a loved one to keep their feet or arms elevated regularly throughout the day, but this is one of the simplest options for managing swelling. Slight elevation may be helpful at night during sleep as well. Depending on the part of the body that needs to be elevated, there are countless products, such as pillows, slings and wedges, that can help support this position and offer comfort.
Get Moving, Keep Moving
Using body parts affected by edema is often difficult, but it may help reduce swelling and eliminate excess fluid. Even the smallest movements and mildest exercise regimen can help get blood and lymph circulating and strengthen the cardiovascular system. If your loved one has any other conditions that prevent them from being active or require special care, check with their physician before beginning a new physical fitness plan. The doctor or a physical therapist may be able to suggest specific exercises to reduce symptoms as well.
Monitor and Limit Fluid Intake
We all know that staying hydrated is an important aspect of our overall health. However, for someone with a chronic health condition that causes edema, less is more. In serious cases, such as pulmonary edema due to severe heart failure or peripheral edema due to advanced kidney disease, a senior’s doctor may prescribe daily liquid limits. Many foods like watermelon, soup, ice cream and gelatin contain a great deal of water and should therefore be factored into your loved one’s limit.
There are a few different techniques for carefully adhering to this restricted diet. One method involves using a container that holds the daily allowance amount for reference. With each serving of liquid that is consumed throughout the day, an equal amount of water is poured into the container. Once it is full, no more liquid should be consumed. Another technique is to determine a set serving size of fluid to consume with each meal (and possibly snacks) throughout the day that adds up to the allowance. Spacing out consumption times can help prevent meeting the limit early in the day and becoming excessively thirsty later on.
By understanding the underlying causes and symptoms of edema, discussing treatment options with a health professional, and encouraging lifestyle changes, family caregivers should be able to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable at home for as long as possible.
Weeping Edema – Types, Causes, Treatment, Pictures, Remedies
Weeping Edema or commonly called “swelling” is defined as the abnormal accumulation of fluid in the tissues. This is often brought about by a serious medical condition and is a alarming and life threatening.
There are 4 types of edema:
- Pulmonary edema is the type where fluid leaks to the air spaces of alveoli which is found in lungs.
- Peripheral edema is a most common type of edema as this is noticeably visible in arms and legs or distal parts of the body.
- Pleural edema is when excess fluids are contained in abdominal area, pleural space or peritoneal cavities inside the body.
- Anasarca is a condition where edema, from the body is widespread and generalized. Fluid accumulation is present for both interstitial tissues and inside cavities of the body such as the above mentioned.
There are still different types of edema in addition to the ones mentioned above but are less common.
Although weeping edema is serious, it is manageable and treatment methods are less complicated which will then be discussed in the following topics.
Edema has a couple of visible symptoms that are easily distinguished. However, these are dependent on causative factors, like location of the affected area and the amount of swelling. Most of the time, affected area would look shiny, swollen and puffy. Early signs include transparent or yellowish fluid coming out in the affected areas. But there are also instances where these aren’t obvious.
Weight gain is the most common sign of edema as this is a result of fluid build-up in the body.
If the cause of edema are allergens such as food or medications, affected areas would be throat and the tongue, although swollen tongue isn’t visible, one can detect its presence as patient would be having a difficult time breathing and they may appear cyanotic too. When this happens, it can be very dangerous as this may cause obstruction in the breathing process.
Discomfort in walking
If Edema is affecting legs, then this can cause discomfort in walking as added weight is felt in both legs. Additionally, swelling in palm of the feet or toes can be painful upon walking. These are common for patients suffering from kidney disorders and cardiac problems.
When the condition affects the lungs, shortness of breath will be appreciated on the patient, skin pallor and sometimes cough can be observed as well. Laboratory tests will also confirm decreased oxygen levels in the blood.
For edema affecting the gastric area, abdominal swelling and increase in abdominal girth will be noticeable. This is common when patient is suffering from bleeding ulcers and liver cirrhosis.
There can be a lot of causes that contribute to edema, however, swelling is just a symptom of an underlying serious condition.
Below are one of the few causative factors of edema:
Low Albumin levels
This contributes to edema because albumin acts like a sponge in the blood. When these blood proteins are low, fluids are not contained in the blood vessels thus swelling occurs.
when allergens attack the body, blood vessels release fluid to the affected areas as a defense mechanism to the foreign bodies.
Congestive Heart Failure
If heart pumps blood insufficiently, back flow occurs thus fluid accumulates in the distal areas such as the legs because the heart is no longer able to pump it back to the chest. This eventually leads to leg edema. However, when the opposite occurs and there is too much pumping, blood is not equally distributed in the distal areas thus they are contained in the chest eventually causing pulmonary edema or swelling of the lungs.
severe liver condition causes fluid retention, this is due to decreased albumin levels in the blood. They keep the blood from leaking outside the blood vessels. However, when there is cirrhosis, fluid leaks to the abdomen causing abdominal swelling.
This is a kidney disorder; this happens when damage to the glomeruli (tiny vessels that filter protein and blood waste products) occurs. Thus protein is not filtered at all and then leaks into the urine often called “proteinuria”. Fluid then accumulates in the tissues.
Pregnancy can cause edema in the legs especially when expectant mothers suffer from eclampsia, gestational diabetes and sometimes deep vein thrombosis which can be very life threatening to both mother and fetus.
There are various medical approaches to treat weeping edema but most of the time treating the causative factor is the best way to address the issue.
Medications such as corticosteroids and NSAIDS treat edema in a way that it reduces the swelling and inflammation however it doesn’t treat the underlying condition. Long term management involves treating the disorder causing edema.
For edema caused by allergic reactions, antihistamines would treat the swelling. If leg edema is caused by a clot in the leg which is common in deep vein thrombosis, blood thinners will fix the problem.
For instances where swelling is caused by congestive heart failure or kidney problem, Diuretics are best recommended by physicians. However clinical approach will depend on the management of the doctor.
Natural remedies can also be an effective approach to treat the disorder. This may include:
frequent and careful movements in the areas affected by edema may assist the fluid to be moved back to the heart however it is best to consult the physician before doing it so they can recommend the best exercise for the patient.
Elevation of the affected area
Elevation of affected area may reduce swelling particularly for leg edema as elevating the leg can decrease pressure in between feet and the floor.
Slow and soft massage on the affected area towards the heart may also reduce swelling. Use of compression stockings is recommended too because it lessens pressure on the affected area and prevent fluid accumulation in the tissue.
Use of emollients such as lotions and moisturizers protect the affected area from peeling and cracking that may lead further insult to the injured part.
incorporation of zero to less sodium intake in daily diet is the best method to prevent and treat edema as salt contributes to fluid retention and increases the risk of worsening the condition.
Weeping Edema Pictures
Take a look at these pictures of weeping edema to find out how it looks like:
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Swelling in Dogs | PetMD
Peripheral Edema in Dogs
Edema is characterized by swelling due to an excessive accumulation of tissue fluid within the interstitium, which is a small space, or gap, in the substance of the body’s tissues or organs. This can be localized (focal) or generalized (diffuse) in location.
Peripheral edema can occur in both dogs and cats, with some dog breeds believed to be more susceptible, including the Poodle, Bulldog, Old English Sheepdog, and Labrador Retriever. If you would like to learn more about how this disease affects cats, please visit this page in the PetMD health library.
Symptoms and Types
Dogs that develop peripheral edema will often have a history of allergies, or other immune, cardiac, or organic diseases. Exposure to toxic or infectious agents, such as poisonous spiders or ticks, and traumatic incidents such as car accidents, are also frequent in the histories of animals that have developed peripheral edema.
Overall, visible symptoms are almost impossible to detect early on in the development of this condition. A physical examination may reveal unexplained weight gain. The areas in which excess fluid may become first apparent are generally the throat or abdomen.
There is a wide range of conditions that can lead to peripheral edema. Localized or single-limb edema may result from injury, such as from a car accident, burns, obstruction in an artery (due to a blood clot), contact with toxic agents, such as a snake bite or bee sting, abnormal tissue growth (known as neoplasia) in the lymphatic tissues of the body, or high pressure in the capillary fluids.
Regional or generalized edema, which is not focused in a single area or limb, may result from infections, such as a severe bacterial infection, congestive heart failure, kidney failure, the tourniquet effect of a bandage bound too tight, or hypernatremia, a disease in which the kidneys retain excessive amounts of sodium.
Diagnosis of peripheral edema is often determined by fine-needle aspiration of an affected area, by which a fluid-sample is removed via needle for microscopic evaluation. An examination of the affected tissue samples taken by biopsy may also help determine an underlying cause for the edema. Additional diagnostic procedures may include urine analysis, chest and lung X-rays, and an electrocardiogram to measure the heart’s functionality.
Treatment will depend on the originating cause of the edema. For dogs that have developed edema secondary to a bodily infection, the application of warm compresses is advised. In some cases, surgery or drainage may be necessary for treating the underlying cause. Severely edematous (swollen) limbs may require amputation if the condition cannot be resolved. Medication to treat the symptoms also depends on the underlying cause for the edema.
Living and Management
Monitoring after initial treatment on the dog will include complete blood counts, urine tests to check for protein concentrations in urine, and a series of biopsies of affected tissues, such as kidney tissues.
Lifestyle changes may be necessary depending on the cause of the edema. For example, a dog that has suffered from congestive heart failure should have its activity restricted during the recovery period. The prognosis for dogs with peripheral edema depends on the underlying cause of the condition.
Some causes of localized edema may be prevented with general safety measures, such as protecting your pet from hazardous areas like roads, where injury may occur, and preventing access to toxic substances and poisonous animals, such as snakes and spiders.
Venous leg ulcer – Illnesses & conditions
With appropriate treatment, most venous leg ulcers heal within 3 to 4 months.
Treatment should always be carried out by a healthcare professional trained in compression therapy for leg ulcers. Usually, this will be a practice or district nurse.
Cleaning and dressing the ulcer
The first step is to remove any debris or dead tissue from the ulcer and apply an appropriate dressing. This provides the best conditions for the ulcer to heal.
A simple, non-sticky dressing will be used to dress your ulcer. This usually needs to be changed once a week. Many people find they can manage cleaning and dressing their own ulcer under the supervision of a nurse.
To improve vein circulation in your legs and treat swelling, your nurse will apply a firm compression bandage over the affected leg. These bandages are designed to squeeze your legs and encourage blood to flow upwards, towards your heart.
There are many different types of bandage or elastic stockings used to treat venous leg ulcers, which may be made in 2, 3 or 4 different layers. The application of a compression bandage is a skilled procedure and they should only be applied by trained healthcare staff.
The bandage is changed once a week, when the dressing is changed.
When compression bandages are first applied to an unhealthy ulcer, it’s usually painful. Ideally, you should have paracetamol or an alternative painkiller prescribed by your GP. The pain will lessen once the ulcer starts to heal, but this can take up to 10-12 days.
It’s important to wear your compression bandage exactly as instructed. If you have any problems, it’s usually best to contact your nurse, instead of trying to remove it yourself. If the compression bandage feels a little too tight and is uncomfortable in bed at night, getting up for a short walk will usually help.
However, you’ll need to cut the bandage off if:
- you get severe pain at the front of your ankle
- you get severe pain on the top of your foot
- your toes become blue and swollen
Once you remove the bandage, make sure you keep your leg highly elevated and contact your doctor or nurse as soon as possible.
In some clinics, specialist teams are using new alternatives to compression bandages, such as special stockings or other compressive devices. These may not be available in every clinic but could change the way ulcers are treated in future. Your specialist will be able to advise you whether a different approach may help you.
Treating associated symptoms
Swelling in the legs and ankles
Venous leg ulcers are often accompanied by swelling of your feet and ankles (oedema), which is caused by fluid. This can be controlled by compression bandages.
Keeping your leg elevated whenever possible, ideally with your toes at the same level as your eyes, will also help ease swelling. You should put a suitcase, sofa cushion or foam wedge under the bottom of your mattress, to help keep your legs raised while you sleep.
You should also keep as active as possible and aim to continue with your normal activities. Regular exercise, such as a daily walk, will help reduce leg swelling. However, you should avoid standing or sitting still with your feet down. You should elevate your feet at least every hour.
Some people with venous leg ulcers develop rashes with scaly and itchy skin.
This is often due to varicose eczema, which can be treated with a moisturiser (emollient) and occasionally a mild corticosteroid cream or ointment. In rare cases, you may need to be referred to a dermatologist (skin specialist) for treatment.
Itchy skin can also sometimes be caused by an allergic reaction to the dressings or creams applied by your nurse. If this happens, you may need to be tested for allergies.
It’s important to avoid scratching your legs if they feel itchy, because this damages the skin and may lead to further ulcers.
Looking after yourself during treatment
To help your ulcer heal more quickly, follow the advice below:
- Try to keep active by walking regularly. Sitting and standing still without elevating your legs can make venous leg ulcers and swelling worse
- Whenever you’re sitting or lying down, keep your affected leg elevated – with your toes level with your eyes
- Regularly exercise your legs by moving your feet up and down, and rotating them at the ankles. This can help encourage better circulation
- If you’re overweight, try to reduce your weight with a healthy diet and regular exercise
- Stop smoking and moderate your alcohol consumption. This can help the ulcer heal faster.
- Be careful not to injure your affected leg, and wear comfortable, well-fitting footwear.
You may also find it helpful to attend a local healthy leg club, such as those provided by the Lindsay Leg Club Foundation, for support and advice.
Treating an infected ulcer
An ulcer sometimes produces a large amount of discharge and becomes more painful. There may also be redness around the ulcer. These symptoms and feeling unwell are signs of infection.
If your ulcer becomes infected, it should be cleaned and dressed as usual.
You should also elevate your leg most of the time and you’ll be prescribed a 7-day course of antibiotics.
The aim of antibiotic treatment is to clear the infection. However, antibiotics don’t heal ulcers and should only be used in short courses to treat infected ulcers.
You should visit your nurse once a week to have your dressings and compression bandages changed. They’ll also monitor the ulcer to see how well it’s healing. Once your ulcer is healing well, your nurse will see you less often.
After the ulcer has healed
Once you’ve had a venous leg ulcer, another ulcer could develop within months or years.
The most effective method of preventing this is to wear compression stockings at all times when you’re out of bed. Your nurse will help you find a stocking that fits correctly and that you can manage yourself.
Various accessories are available to help you put them on and take them off.
Read more about preventing venous leg ulcers.
90,000 Swelling legs – why the legs swell the reason, how to relieve swelling of the legs
Many people experience swelling of the legs, especially at the end of the day.
What are the causes of leg edema / photo pixabay.com
Leg edema is not just a cosmetic problem, but also a symptom of many possible diseases. Its cause can only be determined by a qualified technician. Edema occurs when water is trapped in the tissues of the body.
If your legs feel tired at the end of the day, you may need to see a doctor.
Swollen legs: how to determine if you have swelling of the legs – a simple test
Here is the simplest test that will help determine if you have swelling of the legs: press your finger on the lower leg, hold for 15 seconds and remove the finger. If the dent remains and lasts for at least a minute, you definitely have swelling.
Why legs swell: causes of leg swelling
- Varicose veins is the main and most common cause of leg swelling. Varicose veins – expansion of the superficial veins of the lower extremities, accompanied by valve failure and impaired blood flow.The most dangerous cause of edema is blood clots.
- Heart problems can be another cause of leg swelling.
- Diseases of the kidneys and adrenal glands are also among the reasons why the legs swell. Moreover, with such diseases, puffiness appears on the face and on the hands.
- Malfunctions of the thyroid gland , for example, malfunctioning of the female genital organs and adrenal glands, also cause swelling of the legs.
- Liver diseases
- Overweight . Needless to say, overweight people have a constant load on their legs, which leads to the appearance of edema.
- Pregnancy – during this period, swelling of the legs occurs due to increased stress on the legs, as well as due to hormonal changes. Some women experience swelling of their legs while taking birth control pills.
Let’s separately highlight the bad habits that cause swelling of the legs
1.Sit in one position for a long time, especially with your legs crossed
2. Wrong shoes – narrow, with high heels or flat soles
3. Do strength exercises with excessive load on your legs
4. Too much salt – it delays you water
Legs swell, photo, what do swollen legs look like / medsklad
Types of leg edema
- Stagnant edema is most often formed with an increase in vascular permeability, excessive pressure in the capillaries, for example, with varicose veins.
- Hydermal edema occurs due to the accumulation of excess fluid associated with kidney disease.
- Neuropathic is characteristic of people with diabetes or alcoholism.
- Cachexic edema occurs, in particular, with poor protein nutrition, with anemia.
- There are also allergic edemas, they quickly disappear when the allergen is eliminated.
- Mechanical edema is formed as a result of trauma
What to do if the legs are swollen
A patient who has leg edema needs an examination.First, go to your family doctor, who will refer you for tests and to a specialized specialist – phlebologist, cardiologist, nephrologist or urologist. You can also do an ultrasound of the kidneys and veins, echocardiography. Among the tests that you may be directed to are general and biochemical blood tests, blood sugar tests, general urine tests, and hormone levels.
In any case, only the doctor makes the diagnosis and determines the treatment regimen. Important! It is necessary to treat not just the edema, but the disease causing it.
Swollen legs: how to fight – simple ways
- Walk as often as possible, give up the elevator. This will improve circulation
- Feet can be massaged
- Stay hydrated
- Get up more often if you have a sedentary job. Walk for at least 2 minutes
- Try the miraculous power of a contrast shower
- Limit salt and alcohol
- Soak your feet with sea salt
- Avoid drinking a lot of fluids during the day
Remember the most important thing: not worth exercising self-medication.If edema develops, consult a doctor!
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Swelling of the legs.
What to do? – Mani veselibas dati
First of all, it is necessary to closely observe the behavior of legs, since the legs swell in different ways, and it is not always possible to immediately establish the cause. Observations will help the doctor make the correct diagnosis and give the best recommendations for solving the problem. But everyone can help themselves, moreover, immediately.Explains Dr. Santa Liepa, family doctor, homeopath.
Swelling of the legs is not a joke, it can also indicate dangerous diseases. You should definitely consult a doctor. This must be done urgently if the edema is associated with other complaints, for example, high blood pressure, or if there is swelling on one side of the body.
Carefully observe when and how the legs swell
- Usually the calves of the legs swell. It is necessary to observe whether the entire leg is swollen to the knee, or only the ankle area, or, possibly, the area under the ankles.
- It is necessary to understand whether there is swelling in the morning, or only in the evening and / or after prolonged standing, sitting, or heavy physical exertion.
- Watch for swelling in hot weather or for swelling in cool weather.
- If there is swelling of the legs in the morning, you should pay attention to what you ate in the evening, whether you drank a lot of tea before going to bed.
- It is important to observe if both legs are swollen. And is there any swelling of other parts of the body: perhaps the arms, one arm, the chest and the armpits, the face, the area under the eyes, etc. are swollen?d.
- It is necessary to find out if the mother, father, grandmother and other blood relatives had edema.
- It should be remembered whether there was even a slight swelling before, or the complaints appeared only now.
Causes of leg edema
First, the doctor, evaluating the condition of the legs, complaints and first examinations, excludes:
- heart and kidney failure, which most often appears after 40 years;
- venous or arterial thrombosis;
- oncological and other inflammatory processes;
- Disorders of the thyroid gland, other autoimmune processes.
If the doctor does not find any of the above, it is one of the most common reasons for swelling of the legs: disorders of venous outflow and / or lymph outflow. Most often, this problem is observed in women.
In this case, you need to go to a phlebologist and do a vein examination – Doppler ultrasound, which shows how superficial and deep veins cope when blood needs to be drawn from the legs back to the heart. It is not so easy to establish whether the real cause of edema is precisely the violation of lymph outflow.
Closure of superficial veins, which can be performed using various methods (if surgery is proposed), ensures that the damaged vein is not visible, but does not completely eliminate the circulatory disturbance.
Disorders of venous outflow and lymph outflow cannot be completely cured, but if they do appear, everyone can do a lot to delay the unpleasant consequences that may arise if the problem is ignored.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Any action that makes the body move is useful , promoting the flow of blood and lymph, not allowing fluid to accumulate in the interstitial space.
1. Drink your fluid intake in the first half of the day.
Everyone does not need to drink 2-3 liters of liquid a day, everyone has their own rate. However, you should drink enough fluids, and this should be done in the morning and afternoon. If the body has a tendency to water retention, a cup of tea before bed can lead to the formation of edema.
2. Stretch your legs every 45 minutes!
Prolonged sitting or standing contributes to fluid retention, so at least once an hour you need to move, walk and stretch your legs.Sometimes it seems that there is nowhere to move in the office, but exercises can be done under the table to promote venous and lymphatic drainage.
- It is best to take off your shoes and make circular movements with your feet in both directions, up, down, and move your toes.
- Very good exercise in a sitting position – quickly and alternately knock on the floor with your heels, small blood and lymph vessels will begin to vibrate, and blood circulation in the legs improves.
An exercise that should be done as often as possible helps a lot: lie on your back, lift both legs and arms up to the ceiling and shake them for at least three minutes.From the outside, it looks as if the beetle has rolled over onto its back and waving its paws into the sky.
4. Massage your feet with cool water.
The heat increases the swelling of the legs, therefore, in hot weather, it is advisable to massage the legs from the ankles upwards with a stream of cool water, walk on cool water.
5. Compression stockings must be worn.
It is advisable to wear them every day, moreover, they can be purchased at medical centers, where specialists will help you choose the right size and pressure.Compression stockings should be worn on flights and long journeys.
6. Swim as much as possible.
Water itself provides a good massage for the vessels, and swimming promotes blood circulation.
7. Physical procedures
Physical procedures should be done – Lymphatic drainage massage in a vacuum capsule and Lymphatic drainage boots. Both procedures promote fluid circulation. Since these procedures are performed on a machine, nothing can go wrong.However, if lymphatic drainage is done by hand, it can only be entrusted to a good doctor or physiotherapist. It is advisable to do the procedures twice a week – once for each leg, and take a course of at least 10 procedures.
In the form of courses, you can take medications prescribed by your doctor that strengthen the walls of the veins.
OTHER METHODS THAT MAY HELP
FOLLOW AYURVEDIC MEDICINE RECOMMENDATIONS. In the morning after waking up, it is useful to sip a glass of warm boiled water.It helps cleanse the body of accumulated mucus and fluids. Drink between meals throughout the day, not with or immediately after meals. If you feel thirsty while eating, it is better to drink in small sips. If there are outflow disturbances, foods containing earth and water elements (mucus) (Ayurvedic terms) are not suitable. These are dairy products, yeast dough, etc. The wisdom of Ayurveda helps best when a specialist recommends them individually.
TEAS, promoting lymph circulation.Hibiscus, tea made from currant leaves and licorice are useful (they can be drunk if there is no suspicion of cancer). Tea should be drunk in the morning on an empty stomach. After 35-40 minutes, you should drink activated charcoal, which helps to remove toxic substances. This course can be drunk for about a week. Hazel bark and loose leaf tea also help.
TAKE HERBAL PREPARATIONS to improve venous circulation. Nutritional supplements, which include gingko biloba and the plant extract of centella asiatica, are useful, preparations made from chestnuts are useful.Outwardly, an alcoholic tincture of chestnut helps: the chestnuts must be cut, insisted in alcohol and then rub your feet with this tincture.
A valuable opportunity for people who do not want to use artificially synthesized medicines, but have decided to put their body in order according to the laws of nature, are HOMEOPATHIC MEDICINES, which are individually selected by a homeopathic doctor.
Risks not paying attention to leg edema
Since venous and lymph outflow disorders are most often determined by heredity, you should try to do everything that reduces leg swelling in order to delay the moment when severe lymph and venous blood congestion begins.
They contribute to the development of dermatitis – the skin is dry, reddened, flaky and itchy. Later, there is a risk of poorly healing trophic ulcers. If there is severe disturbance of lymph outflow, elephantiasis can develop when the legs become like logs.
Hormonal changes lead to the fact that edema is formed in women who do not have venous insufficiency. Recommended:
- to wear compression stockings;
- in the evening do not drink a lot of liquid;
- Exercise your legs, avoid prolonged sitting and standing.
Edema may be a sign of pre-eclampsia, in which case you should see a doctor immediately.
Important! Swelling of the legs is a symptom affecting the entire body, therefore, with understanding and patience, everything possible should be done so that it does not interfere with our enjoyment of life.
Swelling on the legs – reasons what to do if the leg is very swollen
The usual shoes became cramped in the evening, and the ankles were swollen – this is a sign of swelling, which can be accompanied by pain and fatigue in the legs.
Isolated cases of leg edema are quite natural, if the weather is hot outside, you walked a lot and for a long time, wore uncomfortable clothes and shoes, or made a long flight.
But when such a symptom begins to appear regularly, this is a reason to think about your health and seek medical advice.
Edema is the accumulation of excess fluid in the tissues. Under natural conditions, in the absence of pathologies, the body removes it through the venous system on its own.
In the event that swelling of the extremities bothers you often and is accompanied by alarming symptoms, such as: the appearance of nodules on the veins, dark areas on the skin, spider veins; frequent bruises and hematomas, even with minor bruises and pressure – this can be a signal of problems with blood vessels and the development of diseases such as thrombophlebitis and varicose veins.
Why do my legs swell?
Both men and women face the problem of swelling of the legs.The unpleasant sensations usually intensify in the evening.
Common causes of leg edema include:
- Drinking a lot of liquid during the day.
Excess moisture does not have time to be carried out by the vessels and enters the intercellular space.
- Prolonged sitting on too soft and low chairs, uncomfortable position (crossed legs).
In both cases, large veins are compressed, and blood does not flow well to the legs.
- Intensive training.
This problem is often faced by people who are engaged in running, walking, strength exercises.
- Uncomfortable clothes and shoes.
Many women are familiar with the feeling of tired feet when wearing high-heeled shoes. Due to the unnatural position of the foot and the increased stress on the toe, blood supply is impaired and swelling may occur. A similar problem occurs when the sole of the shoe is completely flat. The habit of wearing tight pants and jeans can also lead to poor circulation.
In obese people, due to metabolic disorders and a higher load on the legs, swelling may occur.
In pregnant women, as a result of increased stress on the legs and hormonal changes, edema may appear. But it can also signal gestosis (a serious vascular disease), therefore, with frequent swelling of the legs in the third trimester or after childbirth, an urgent need to consult a doctor.
- In case of injuries, burns and frostbite of the lower extremities, the affected area of the skin can be severely swollen – up to limitation of mobility.
Swelling of the legs – what is the reason?
Depending on the reasons, there are 7 types of leg edema.
Often occur with varicose veins and thrombophlebitis, when normal blood flow and the work of venous valves are disturbed. There is stagnation of blood in the veins, the pressure on the walls of the vessels increases, which leads to their thinning and the ingress of blood into the tissues.
As you might guess from the name, this type of puffiness is characteristic of varicose veins. In the early stages of the disease, swelling occurs periodically and is better treated, at later stages, milky and blue edema occurs, which can be accompanied by pain, fever, discoloration of the skin, and the development of trophic ulcers.
Appear due to the accumulation of excess fluid in the tissues, which occurs against the background of disruption of the kidneys, in which their filtration function decreases.
Occurs in diabetics and people with alcoholism.
They are a symptom of protein-energy malnutrition, which occurs against the background of a lack of protein foods in the diet, chronic forms of anemia, malignant neoplasms.
Manifest as a reaction of the body to any allergen. They occur suddenly in combination with skin redness and itching.Go away when taking antihistamines.
Appear with injuries: bruises, fractures, compression of blood vessels.
90,000 Treatment and care of venous trophic ulcers
Treatment of venous insufficiency and venous trophic ulcers is a team work in which the patient himself plays an important role. If the patient understands the essence of his illness and its causes, if the treatment is carried out continuously with the support of both the family doctor and the family nurse and specialist doctor, then this helps to recover even in the most severe cases.Since, unfortunately, the cause of the ulcer cannot be completely eliminated, the treatment of venous insufficiency must be lifelong to avoid the recurrence of ulcers.
This patient guide provides simple guidance on how to prevent ulcers and how to treat existing ulcers.
Venous trophic ulcer is a chronic, often poorly healing leg ulcer caused by venous disease. The ulcer usually develops in the lower third of the lower leg, near the ankle, on the inner side of the lower leg.
The causes of venous trophic ulcers are:
Vein dilatation, which can be caused by hereditary weakness of the connective tissue and is often present in many members of the same family. In the dilated veins of the lower extremities, the venous valves do not close completely, and part of the blood moving towards the heart flows back through the unclosed venous valves, and thus the blood pressure in the veins of the lower extremities, and especially in the lower leg, rises.
Less commonly, varicose veins occur as a consequence of some other condition (pregnancy, tumors in the abdominal cavity), due to which the flow of blood towards the heart is difficult.
Inflammation of the walls of the veins, which directly damages the valves of the veins and is the cause of venous insufficiency.
The blood circulation consists of arterial, venous and capillary parts. The arteries carry oxygenated and nutrient-rich blood to all tissues of the body.Veins are also a collecting system that transports blood back towards the heart. In the veins, blood flows from the veins of the lower extremities towards the heart. This movement is provided by venous valves that direct blood in one direction and a muscle pump (calf muscles), which work during physical activity.
If the veins are dilated and the venous valves are damaged due to previous inflammation, there is a backflow of blood and stagnation of blood in the lower part of the venous system. The vein wall becomes thinner and its permeability increases. This leads to edema in the lower extremities, especially in the ankle area. The swelling increases in the evening and decreases in the morning, after a person has been in a horizontal position for a long time. If the edema does not go away for a long time, red blood cells begin to leave the bloodstream through the thin wall of the veins, which stain the skin in a brownish-purple hue. The metabolism of the skin is disturbed, the skin and subcutaneous tissues become thinner, it becomes dry and eczema develops.If the edema is left untreated, a poorly healing venous trophic ulcer may develop (usually after microtrauma).
Figure 1. Normal and dilated (varicose) veins
- Heredity: Heredity has been proven to play an important role in the development of varicose veins. Often, problems with varicose veins occur in several generations of the same family. The first varicose veins can occur at a young age.
- Excess weight: being overweight or obese places an increased strain on the lower limbs, and the fat in the abdominal cavity interferes with the return of venous blood towards the heart.
- Gender: Venous insufficiency is most common in women.
- Age: The incidence of venous trophic ulcers usually increases with age.
- Prolonged standing and sitting: the movement of blood towards the heart provides, among other things, muscles. Physical activity triggers the muscle pump, which improves the movement of blood through the veins towards the heart. Long-term standing and sitting in one place increases congestion in the veins and causes swelling in the legs and feet.Therefore, varicose veins most often appear in workers who spend their working day on their feet or sitting (for example, hairdressers, salespeople, chauffeurs, office workers).
- Smoking impairs blood circulation.
- Pregnancy (s): In case of pregnancy, the fetus presses on the veins in the abdominal region and causes increased pressure in the lower extremities. The reason for the appearance of varicose veins can also be hormonal changes in the body during pregnancy.Pregnancy itself is not a cause of venous disease, but it can accelerate the onset of venous insufficiency. Each subsequent pregnancy increases the risk of venous insufficiency.
- The dilated veins on the lower extremities become clearly visible: both the capillary network, which takes on a bluish tint, and veins, which can be expanded to the width of a finger, can be expanded.
- Pain and itching in the inner part of the lower leg, in the lower third of the lower leg.
- By the evening, the feeling of heaviness and fatigue in the legs increases.
- Edema appears on the lower limb, especially on the ankle, which increases towards evening.
Photo 1. Dilated veins on the lower leg
The fact of edema can be established by pressing a finger on the front surface of the lower part of the lower leg. A dent will appear under the finger, which will disappear after a few minutes. The cause of edema is an increase in the permeability of the walls of venous vessels, due to the fact that the pressure in them increases.
Discoloration of the skin on the lower leg is a dangerous signal that chronic venous insufficiency has reached a phase during which there is an increased risk of ulceration.
Signs indicating the danger of ulcers:
- Redness in the ankle area.
- Skin pigmentation (skin turned brown): due to chronic venous insufficiency, in addition to plasma (the transition of which causes edema), red blood cells also begin to pass through the walls of the venous vessels into the tissues, which change the skin color to brownish purple.
- Sclerosis or hardening of the skin and subcutaneous tissue: An increase in blood pressure develops a hardening of the skin and subcutaneous tissue in the ankle area, causing the subcutaneous tissue and skin to become thinner, the lower leg becomes thinner compared to the calf muscle and the leg resembles an inverted champagne bottle. Thinning skin becomes very easily traumatized.
- Whitish spots: Characterized by bright white spots arising from skin pigmentation.
- Skin inflammation (eczema): The lower leg may develop a purple, itchy and painful rash. The surface of the skin can be dry or, conversely, damp.
Photo 2. Edema and changes in the skin of the left leg. The shin resembles an inverted champagne bottle.
Photo 3. Varicose (dry) eczema
Photo 4. Skin hyperpigmentation, against the background of which atrophic spots are visible
Photo 5. Typical skin changes accompanying chronic venous insufficiency, ulcers are visible on their background
A venous trophic ulcer usually develops as a result of the long-term presence of increased pressure in the venous system, and with the help of effective preventive measures, the occurrence of ulcers can be avoided.
- Avoid extremity edema: In the veins, blood flows from the extremities towards the heart, from bottom to top – i. e. in the direction opposite to gravity. This explains why edema occurs when a person with venous insufficiency sits or stands for a long time. By the morning, the swelling decreases, since the legs were in a horizontal position all night. A person can use the same principle to his advantage if during the day he finds time to lie down for a while with his legs raised.Congested veins are relieved by gravity. If the legs are raised above the level of the chest, then the swelling of the tissues in them will decrease.
- Move. The calves of the legs are said to contain the person’s “other heart”, which helps to pump blood towards the heart. The calf muscle helps blood circulation in the veins. Walking at a moderate pace or cycling helps the blood circulate better in the veins. If physical activity is not possible for any reason, the calf muscles can be made to work with the help of targeted flexion and extension of the toes.Long-term standing or sitting in one position is the most inappropriate for this disease, this position can lead to an increase in edema and aggravation of venous insufficiency.
- Avoid Excessive Heat: Veins are known to worsen, usually in the summer during warm weather. If possible, avoid hot steam rooms in the sauna, baths, washing in too warm water. It is recommended to shower with lukewarm water.
- Moisturize damaged dry skin with base creams.The odorless and colorless creams sold in pharmacies help restore the necessary moisture and elasticity in problem areas of the skin and do not cause allergies.
- Quit smoking and try to reduce your alcohol intake.
- Food must be healthy.
- Try to lose weight.
- Avoid injury. Use compression treatment (see details on page 15): chronic venous insufficiency requires compression treatment – daily and constant wearing of special compression stockings or bandages.Such medical medical stockings and elastic bandages change the blood exchange in the veins by means of external pressure and make it more efficient. Stockings should be worn on the legs (or bandages) in the morning to prevent swelling during the day. Healing stockings or bandages should be removed in the evening before going to bed. Compression treatment is not applicable to bedridden patients. Do not forget that compression treatment is effective in preventing ulcers only when done continuously!
- Other treatment options for varicose veins: Talk with your family doctor about surgical options, which today mean more than just surgery.If necessary, the family doctor will write out a referral sheet for an appointment with a specialist doctor.
B a venous trophic ulcer occurs against the background of a previous long-term change in the skin, usually after a microtrauma (for example, a mosquito bite, a scratch) in the lower leg region. Edema and metabolic disorders in the tissue lead to the fact that the ulcer begins to gradually increase, its surface may initially be covered with a brownish or blackish crust. This is a sign of dead tissue or necrosis.From the ulcer, edematous fluid collected in the tissue is released, which is a good breeding ground for microbes on healthy skin and in the environment. In the ulcer, chronic inflammation begins to develop, which in turn increases edema and creates metabolic disorders in the tissues. There is a so-called “vicious circle” in which the resulting ulcer worsens the condition of the veins and this, in turn, is the cause of metabolic disorders in the ulcer and the surrounding tissue.
Although chronic venous insufficiency is the most common cause of chronic leg ulcers, there is a group of other diseases that also lead to leg ulcers.
Often, patients with ulcers worry if the ulcer can cause gangrene, which can lead to limb amputation. In fact, a venous ulcer does not cause gangrene. Gangrene occurs due to disturbances in the arterial circulation, as a result of which the tissues do not receive enough oxygen and nutrients. This circulatory disorder occurs due to narrowing or blockage of the arteries (arterial or ischemic ulcer). In this case, painful ulcers may develop on the lower limbs and most often on the feet.Circulatory insufficiency is usually indicated by a feeling of coldness in the legs, difficulty walking (the so-called variable claudication), and pain in the lower leg and feet.
Leg ulcers can also be those in which both the venous and arterial circulatory systems can be damaged.
In addition, there are some other conditions of the body that cause ulcers. In such cases, a thorough examination by a family doctor or an angiosurgeon should be carried out before starting compression therapy.
Be sure to inform your family doctor if you have diabetes, hypertension, neurological diseases, diseases of the joints and gastrointestinal tract, or if you have a malignant tumor. Your family doctor can help you find out the true cause of ulcers.
Medical compression treatment is performed with an elastic bandage or medical stocking that applies pressure from the outside and thus helps the venous valves work and improves blood flow in the veins.Compression means do not need to be used at night. Compression
therapy is not applicable to bedridden patients.
Compression treatment is the main treatment for chronic venous insufficiency and venous trophic ulcers, eliminating the underlying cause of this disease. The most important thing in this treatment is its continuity.
Effect of compression treatment on the venous system:
- improves blood flow in veins, making venous valves more efficient
- reduces the volume of excess venous blood in the extremities
- reduces the return of blood (reflux) in superficial and / or deep veins
- reduces the increased blood pressure in the veins due to the disease.
Compression action on fabric:
- Reduces tissue pressure
- reduces inflammation
- promotes tissue healing
Special compression stockings or elastic bandages can be used as compression treatment.
Compression stockings are divided into compression classes
Compression class I, II, III and IV stockings are very effective in the treatment of venous insufficiency.The decision about which class of stockings to choose is made by the doctor depending on the level of venous insufficiency and the condition of the arteries of the lower extremities. In the case of concomitant arterial insufficiency, too much compression can lead to a deterioration in the blood supply to the legs.
Compression stockings are available from stores selling medical aids. . The medical stocking must be selected individually according to the patient’s size.Since putting on the medicated stocking for the first time can be very difficult, ask the salesperson for help. If necessary, ask for aids to tighten the stocking.
Be sure to ask for how long and under what conditions the warranty for purchased medical stockings is valid.
When choosing compression stockings, make sure that the packaging of the stockings bears the EU mark. In this case, you can be sure that the stocking will provide the necessary compression.
Photo 6 and 7.Correct position of the medical stocking and golf course
The upper edge of the medical stocking should not reach the groin, but only the height of the fold of the buttocks. Knee-highs should not be higher than two centimeters from the knee joint. Medical stockings have a wide, soft fixed top (piping) that prevents the stockings from sliding down.
In addition to medical golf and stockings, you can also use medical tights. Preference should be given to medicated stockings and tights, but the constant wearing of medicated golf will certainly be better than refusal from compression treatment.
There are also prophylactic stockings for the prevention of thrombosis, which are worn during and after surgery (usually white stockings). They are not suitable for the treatment of venous insufficiency!
How to wear compression stockings?
One of the reasons that compression treatment does not work is that the medicated stockings are very difficult to put on. Often, patients refuse compression stockings precisely because of the inconvenience of using them.
Indeed, at the beginning, the stockings are very tight. Since the leg is swollen, pulling on the stocking often fails. However, there are several medical aids that make it easier to put the medicated stocking on your leg. For example, there is a special frame on which a medical stocking is put on and then a leg is placed in it with a sliding motion.
In the case of a stocking without a sock, a pouch with a sliding surface or a silk handkerchief can be used as an auxiliary medical device, which is placed on the toe of the foot and the stocking is pulled in a sliding manner over the leg.Later, the auxiliary is removed through the open toe of the stocking.
In the case of a closed-toe stocking, you need to turn the medical stocking out, and, starting with the toes and feet, gradually pull the stocking up. You can use a special sliding film, which is fixed under the foot and on the lower leg, which will help when pulling on the medicated stocking.
Photos 8, 9, 10 and 11. Medical aids for pulling stockings
If putting on a medical stocking still fails, the reduction of edema should be started with the use of compression bandages.
Compression bandages are a good alternative to compression stockings in case a patient has problems putting on a compression stocking through an ulcer. Stretch elastic bandages with a width of more than 10 cm and a length of more than 7 meters should be preferred as they give the best result. If the bandage feels stiff and irritates the skin, a cotton tubular bandage, which is usually used under a cast, can be placed under the bandage. The bandage is placed on your leg in the morning right after you wake up, that is, at the moment when the swelling has not yet had time to form.Bandaging with strong pressure begins with the foot and moves upward in bandaging circles so that the next circle covers 2/3 of the previous one. The last circle of dressing is fixed with a plaster. To fix the bandage, you cannot use the pins in the bandage package – they are intended only to secure the bandage roll itself.
Compression medical devices must provide the required pressure: the greatest pressure should be in the lower third of the lower leg and it should decrease towards the heart.
Photo 12. A cotton tubular stocking and softening cotton are placed under the compression bandage
Photo 13. The bandage is started from the foot, immediately at the toes, slightly pulling the bandage. The strongest pressure should be in the ankle area
Photo 14. An elastic bandage is fixed on the lower leg with a plaster. To fix the bandage, you cannot use the pins supplied with the bandage package
Photo 15. Bandaging of the thigh area begins while standing from the upper part of the lower leg, upward pressure should decrease
Photo 16.Compression bandage
It is important to start treatment in the morning, when the limb is not yet swollen or the swelling is still small. The pressure can be increased gradually. The greatest pressure should be in the lower leg and decrease upward. In order to understand whether the amount of pressure acting in the ankle area is sufficient, it is necessary to place a cuff from a pressure measuring device on the lower part of the lower leg and pump it up to a pressure of 30 mm Hg. Art. – this will be for you a comparative indicator of the sensation of a sufficient level of pressure for a medical stocking.
From the point of view of achieving the ultimate goal of treatment, its constancy is very important. Medical stockings or compression dressings should be used every day and neither a visit to the doctor nor other events are exempt from these procedures. A single occurrence of edema is enough and the efforts aimed at the previously carried out long-term treatment will be wasted .
One of the reasons that compression treatment does not work is that the medicated stockings are very difficult to put on.Often, patients refuse compression stockings precisely because of the inconvenience of using them. However, without constant treatment, improvement in the condition cannot be expected.
Physical activity plays a very important role in the treatment of venous insufficiency. Walking at a moderate pace helps pump blood upward better through the work of the calf muscles. Cycling trips are also valid. If physical activity is not possible for any reason, then exercises for flexion and extension of the feet will help (see.Annex 1). The most inappropriate for the patient is standing or sitting in one position for a long time. In such cases, the patient must find the opportunity to sometimes walk or lie down with raised legs – this is so that the veins, which are under great pressure, could be released from excess blood volume. Place pillows under your knees, shins and feet so that your feet are 20-30 cm higher than your buttocks and so that you can lie comfortably. It is advisable to lie in this position for at least 20-30 minutes, repeating such sessions several times a day if necessary.You need to walk at least 30 minutes a day.
The effectiveness of the use of food additives in the treatment of venous trophic ulcers has not been proven. If the patient feels that they are getting relief from the use of nutritional supplements, then the use of such supplements purchased from pharmacies is not contraindicated.
The intensity of pain in the case of an ulcer is very individual. In some cases, pain relievers are needed only before the dressing procedure, in other cases, the pain can be very severe and requires constant use of pain relievers.Discuss the use of pain relievers with your family doctor, as if the number of pain relievers to be taken is constantly increasing, it is better to use stronger pain relievers or combine them with other medications. If needed, help can be obtained from the pain counseling rooms available at major hospitals.
Dry and flaky skin on the lower legs is a common problem with vein diseases, which requires care. In such cases, help can be obtained by using over-the-counter base creams.Pharmacy creams are non-allergenic and restore natural moisture levels in dry skin areas. In case of moist eczema, the use of zinc paste is recommended. If your skin does not improve, you should seek advice from your family doctor.
Depending on its nature and the means of treatment used, the ulcer needs constant dressing, which can last for months or even years. Often the dressing is performed by a trained FHN or FH.At the same time, the patient himself and his relatives should have basic knowledge of the treatment of ulcers and be able to change the bandages on their own. Changing bandages on their own allows patients to be more flexible in their daily life plans, which is more convenient for them. For questions regarding ulcer management, you can contact your Family Nurse and Home Nurse.
Try to avoid choosing the wrong remedies for ulcer treatment, as treatment should depend on the condition of the ulcer and its phase of development.Do not use home remedies (plantain, cabbage leaves, baked onions, etc.) to treat ulcers.
- If necessary, take your prescribed pain relievers 15-20 minutes before changing the bandage.
- Wash your hands.
- First of all, carefully remove the bandage from the ulcer; if necessary, this can be done by soaking the bandage with water or saline. Because the dressing is soaked in ulcer secretions and bacteria, pack this dangerous infectious material in a plastic bag. Avoid reusing the dressing. Prefer sterile dressings when dressing.
- Rinse the ulcer with lukewarm water with light pressure under a shower, taking care to carefully remove the ulcer crust with a swab. If not in a shower, rinse the ulcer with lukewarm water, being careful to gently remove the crust of the ulcer with a clean swab. To date, there is no evidence that the use of antiseptics is better than the use of running warm water.Many antiseptics are really effective for ulcerative infections, but at the same time they inhibit the healing process. When cleaning ulcers, do not use hydrogen peroxide, as it has a scientifically proven toxic effect on tissue cells.
- Dry the surrounding tissue ulcers and the ulcer itself by lightly touching them with a swab (the ulcer should not be rubbed hard).
- If necessary, apply cream to the surrounding dry skin.
- If the ulcer has a bad smell, redness or other signs of infection, the ulcer can be washed out with an alcohol-free antiseptic.
- In case of ulcer discharge, zinc-containing products or other protective creams (barrier creams) can be used to protect the surrounding skin.
- Place a suitable care product on the ulcer and secure with a bandage (the patch may in turn damage the delicate skin surrounding the ulcer). The FHN, ulcer nurse or home nurse will advise you which remedy to use, and this will depend on the phase of ulcer development, discharge from it, signs of inflammation and whether the remedy is right for you.
- Continue compression treatment.
Photo 17. Cleansing the ulcer with a swab
Photo 18. To remove the purulent, foul-smelling covering layer of the ulcer, use antiseptics to wash the ulcers
Photo 19. Dry the skin surrounding the ulcer by lightly touching the swab
Photo 20. Apply a protective cream to the skin surrounding the ulcer
Photo 21. Apply ulcer to the ulcer
Photo 22.Fix the ulcer care product with elastic
bandage without strong pressure, but securely
An ulcer goes through several phases in its healing, which require different means of ulcer care. Modern ulcer care products are formed from substances that allow you to change the dressing less often and still provide a suitable environment for ulcer healing. Either the family nurse or the family nurse acts as a consultant on the choice of a particular remedy.
Most of the costs of ulcer care are covered by the Health Insurance Fund on the basis of the digirecept prescribed by the family doctor or specialist doctor.
Do not keep the ulcer open! If the ulcer dries in the open air, the condition will worsen and the risk of infection increases.
Also, home remedies (like plantain, cabbage leaves, etc.) should not be applied to an open ulcer, since an open ulcer is the gateway to infection.
Since chronic venous trophic ulcer requires long-term treatment, there is always the possibility that ulcerative infection may occur during treatment. Signs of an exacerbation of a chronic infection are not necessarily redness, a purulent top layer, or a fever – the symptoms may be less noticeable.
See your doctor if:
- The ulcer became reddened, painful and its temperature increased
- Despite treatment, the ulcer began to enlarge.
- So-called “pockets” have developed at the edges of the ulcer.
- Purulent, profuse discharge with a bad odor follows from the ulcer.
- Feeling unwell and fever.
The family doctor may recommend the use of antibacterial remedies for ulcers or, if necessary, prescribe anti-inflammatory treatment.
Photo 23. Infected chronic ulcer
A chronic ulcer may take several months to heal despite effective treatment.Even though the ulcer will heal, the cause of the ulcer is still there. Often, after the ulcer has healed, patients no longer bother with compression treatment and refuse to use medical stockings and bandages. However, just one episode of edema is enough – and a new ulcer may develop. To avoid the emergence of a new ulcer, the key words are life-long and permanent compression treatment.
Photo 24. Healing ulcer
Leather plastics.For whom? Why? When?
If the treated ulcer does not heal within a period of four to six months, then the specialist doctor decides whether skin plastic surgery is necessary. Skin plasty is a fairly simple operation that helps the ulcer heal, but does not correct the cause of its occurrence. Therefore, the operation is performed only for those patients who continue the compression treatment procedures after the ulcer has healed. A new ulcer (relapse) occurs in about half of the patients and is caused precisely by the interruption of compression treatment after the ulcer has healed.Just a short-term jump in pressure in the veins is enough – and the transplanted skin dies off and a new ulcer appears.
Photos 25 and 26. Ulcer before skin grafting and ulcer covered with skin grafting
Often venous trophic ulcer is not the only problem of the patient. The patient may also have developed heart failure, diabetes and other diseases that can interfere with the healing of the ulcer. Discuss your health problems with your family doctor, who can help you keep your comorbidities under control.
Venous trophic ulcer is a long-term problem that complicates the patient’s daily life. In order to cope with it, the help of various specialists is needed. The key to solving the problem of ulcer healing lies in the hands of the patient himself, and to achieve success requires constant work according to the treatment plan prescribed by the doctor.
- The level of compression of the medical stockings required for you is determined by the doctor depending on the severity of the venous insufficiency and the condition of the arteries.
- Healing stockings are available from health stores. The sellers of these stores will be able to measure your leg and help you choose the right stocking.
- When choosing compression stockings, knee-highs or tights, make sure that the packaging or the stockings themselves bear the RAL-GZ 387: 2000 mark and the compression class (CCL 1-CCL 4). So you can be sure that the stocking will give gradual.
RAL-GZ 387: 2000 sign
- Different countries have different standards.Make sure that the purchased stockings have exactly the pressure that the doctor prescribed for you.
- Since putting on the medicated stocking for the first time can be very difficult, ask your salesperson for help.
- Be sure to ask for how long and under what conditions the guarantee for medical stockings is valid.
- If you think that pulling on the stocking yourself may be too difficult for you, ask the seller for aids.
Photo 1. Frame for pulling on the legs of the compression stocking
Photo 2. Foot pocket for pulling on a medical stocking with an open toe
Photo 3. A pull-out foot pocket designed for pulling on a medical stocking with open and closed toes
Photo 4. Gloves with a special coating for pulling medical stockings
- Newton, H. Assessment of a venouslegulcer. Wound Essentials, Vol5, 2010, 69-78.
- Newton, H . Eczema associated with venous leg ulcers. Wound Essentials, Vol9. 2014, 72–78
- Simplifying venous leg ulcer management. Consensus recommendation. Wounds International, 2015.
- Newton, H. Top tips for managing venous leg ulcers. Wounds International, Vol3, 2012.
- Sinha, S., Sreedharan, S. Management of venouslegulcer in general practice – a practical guideline . http://www.racgp.org.au/afp/2014/september.
- Moffatt, C . Compression Therapy in Practice. Wounds UK, 2007.
- Anderson, I . What is venous leg ulcer. Wounds Essentials, Vol4, 2009 .
- Collins, L., Seraj, S., Jefferson, T . Diagnosis and Treatment of VenousUlcers http://www.aafp.org/afp/2010/0415/p989.html.
- Leg Ulcrs. Patient information http // www. Circulationfoundation.org.uk.
- Griffin, J. Assessment and management of venouslegulcers. Wound Care Today, 2014, Vol 1, No 1.
- Carmel, J. E. Venous Ulcers. Acute and chronic wounds 2012, chapter 12, 194-2013.
90,000 Leg edema in the elderly: causes, treatment
Severe swelling of the legs in the elderly appears from a number of factors.At the same time, the metabolism slows down in the elderly, and many obsolete diseases make themselves felt. And when fluid accumulates in the body, there is a great risk that the legs will become swollen.
But, before starting treatment, you should identify the root cause of the problem. Indeed, only with a correctly established diagnosis, the treatment will be effective.
Legs swell in an elderly person: causes
To effectively treat swollen feet, you need to know the causes of these symptoms.Here are some possible factors that can cause swelling in your legs:
Most often, the reason lies in the patient’s state of health. Namely:
- Overweight, obesity.
- Diseases and pathologies of the heart, kidneys, liver.
- Problems with blood vessels, varicose veins.
- Taking certain medications.
- Injuries sustained.
- Diabetes mellitus.
In addition to health problems, external factors can also be the cause, such as:
- Low mobility.
- Incorrect power supply. It is necessary to reconsider what the elderly person eats and reduce the amount of salty, fatty, spicy foods. By consuming it, you provoke fluid retention and, as a result, the manifestation of edema.
- Uncomfortable shoes and tight clothing.
If you see that the legs of an elderly person are swollen, find out the causes of this ailment. Please note that self-medication may not produce visible results and sometimes be harmful. Therefore, if the legs of an elderly person are swollen, the first thing to do is to conduct a high-quality diagnosis.
Only an experienced doctor, after conducting a study, studying all analyzes, can determine the correct diagnosis. Because if the legs of an elderly person swell, this is a symptom that there is a malfunction in the body and it must be eliminated.
Treatment of leg edema in the elderly
After the doctor’s conclusion has been made, you should immediately proceed to the correct complex treatment. First of all, it is necessary to treat the underlying ailment that causes swelling. These may be diseases associated with:
- by kidneys,
- hormonal background.
By eliminating the source of the disease, the swelling will go away by itself. To quickly eliminate swelling with tablets, diuretics are often used.
But do not abuse them, because their use leads to the leaching of potassium from the body.
Local treatment is also quite effective:
Ointment for leg edema in the elderly. Use an anti-inflammatory ointment or gel that contains heparin or horse chestnut as a therapy.They effectively help relieve swelling, as well as improve blood circulation. Ointments increase vascular tone and help get rid of inflammation.
An excellent anti-edema remedy – silicon needles.
Special compression garments (knitwear: underwear, stockings and socks) noticeably improve the condition of the legs.
Prevention of edema
So, we figured out why the legs of the elderly swell and how to treat it. But the prevention of swelling is an important point.What to do:
- If the legs of an elderly person are very swollen, it is important to diversify the diet and include more fresh vegetables and fruits. Excellent diuretic effect in mountain ash, melon, watermelon, blackberry. Rice porridge also helps to flush out excess fluid. Incorporate it into your diet. Eat less junk food, alcohol.
- Move more, do light exercise, go for walks in the fresh air.
- Foot massage will also help relieve swelling and pain.
- Iodized sea salt baths.
If the legs of an elderly person are severely swollen, do not neglect this signal. Take up comprehensive treatment – it is important to monitor your health at any age. Don’t forget this.
90,000 Why do legs, arms and face swell and what to do about it
This “wrong” can range from “okay” to the prospect of imminent death. Therefore, do not ignore the swelling.
When you need to urgently call an ambulance
Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of the following symptoms :
- The swelling is sudden and rapidly increasing in size;
- it (regardless of the place of appearance) is accompanied by shortness of breath, chest pain;
- Simultaneously with the onset of edema, you feel anxiety, severe dizziness or headache;
- Only one leg is swollen.
It is not necessary to call an ambulance, but try to consult a doctor as soon as possible if:
- swelling (talking about any part of the body) does not go away with time;
- you have heart, liver, or kidney disease;
- The swollen area is red and feels hot to the touch
- edema accompanied by fever;
- you are pregnant.
What is edema
Edema occurs when water is retained in the tissues of the body.Most often this happens with the legs – fluid accumulates in the area of \ u200b \ u200bthe feet, ankles, ankles. But swelling can often be found on other parts of the body – hands, abdomen, face.
Excess water appears from the blood vessels: after all, it is the basis of blood plasma.
When the blood stagnates in one area or another, moisture begins to squeeze out through the walls of the vessels into the intercellular space. There are other options: when the walls of the vessels, for one reason or another, become more permeable, or there is a substance in the tissues that delays the excretion of excess fluid.What exactly you have depends on the cause of the swelling.
Where does edema come from
These are the most common causes of .
1. You were injured or burned
Deep scratch, bee sting, sprained ankle, burn – any of the injuries that have affected the inner layers of the skin, our body considers a danger. And he reacts to it with edema. The more fluid from the blood vessels in the damaged area, the more white blood cells there are to fight off possible infection.
2. You drink too much or too little
In the first case, the kidneys do not have time to remove excess fluid from the body. A lot of water accumulates in the blood plasma, it is squeezed out through the walls of blood vessels.
In the second, when there is a catastrophic lack of fluid, the body begins to make its reserves in the intercellular space. Therefore, edema often appears in the heat. They are a signal that you are approaching dehydration.
By the way, large doses of alcohol also provoke a lack of fluid.With corresponding “swollen” consequences in the morning.
3. You ate a lot of salty
Normally, excess fluid from the intercellular space goes to the same place where it came from: it returns to the vascular system. But salt retains water in tissues. As a result, the love for salted fish or pickled cucumbers often turns into swelling.
By the way, hyaluronic acid, which is used in rejuvenating beauty injections, has the same moisture-retaining effect.If you overdo it with injections, you can get a swollen face instead of a youthful face.
4. You are on a low protein diet
If the body lacks protein, its tissues, including the walls of blood vessels, become less elastic and more easily pass moisture into the intercellular space. Therefore, vegetable or fruit fasting days, which are popular in summer, can also cause swelling.
5. You have been in the same position for too long
We mentioned above the connection between circulatory congestion and swelling.This type of edema most often affects the legs – for example, if you have been standing or sitting for too long – and arms if they were in an uncomfortable position.
6. You are a woman and you have PMS
Hormonal fluctuations in premenstrual syndrome are often accompanied by accumulation and retention of fluid in the tissues.
7. You are pregnant
As in the previous case, hormonal fluctuations are to blame. The same reason works if you are approaching menopause or are taking oral contraceptives.
8. You are taking certain medications
Swelling can be a side effect of even seemingly innocent drugs :
- popular pain relievers such as ibuprofen or naproxen;
- medicines for high blood pressure;
- Certain diabetes medications;
9. You have an allergy
In response to an allergen entering the body, the vessels located near the place of its highest concentration release liquid into the tissue in order to quickly neutralize and remove the danger.
10. You have a serious illness associated with the work of internal organs
This situation can be assumed if the swelling becomes chronic, that is, it manifests itself regularly, day after day. There are several diseases and disorders that cause tissues to accumulate excess moisture.
- Chronic heart failure. The heart cannot pump blood efficiently, so it stagnates in the blood vessels, which leads to edema. The legs are most often affected, but heart failure also manifests itself as swelling in the abdomen.
- Kidney disease. Damaged kidneys cannot cope with the removal of excess water from the body. Swelling usually occurs on the legs and around the eyes.
- Hepatitis and cirrhosis. In this case, fluid most often accumulates in the legs and abdomen.
- Chronic venous insufficiency. Injuries or weak walls of the veins in the legs lead to the fact that blood is retained in the lower extremities, provoking edema. This is a dangerous condition: blood stagnation sometimes leads to the formation of blood clots.If such a blood clot breaks off and goes into the bloodstream, it can block the work of the heart. Therefore, severe edema on one of the legs is an indication for an urgent call to an ambulance.
- Lymphostasis. This is the name of malfunctioning of the lymphatic system. It is she who helps to cleanse the tissues of excess fluid. Lymphostasis often occurs with obesity or cancer treatment.
How to remove edema
It depends on what exactly caused it. If it is understandable – for example, you were bitten by a wasp, you got scratched or touched yesterday at a party, you don’t have to worry: in the vast majority of cases, the body copes with such edema on its own.
If your legs, arms, face swell regularly and you do not know what exactly is caused, do not delay visiting a therapist. The doctor will establish a diagnosis and will not miss the disorders that are dangerous to health and life.
Good news: if we are not talking about really dangerous diseases, you can eliminate fluid retention by slightly changing your lifestyle:
- Limit salt and alcohol consumption.
- Avoid dehydration.
- Move more – it will not let the blood stagnate.
- Talk to your doctor about taking diuretics – for example, pharmacy teas with a diuretic effect or diuretic medications.
- Eat more magnesium-rich foods. This trace element is abundant in oatmeal, bananas, almonds, broccoli, beets. You can also take pharmacy supplements, but be sure to consult with your therapist about this.
- Set aside time for a massage to improve the drainage of excess fluid from your tissues . Just be sure to talk to your doctor! There are situations when massage is contraindicated.
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causes, symptoms, treatment, first aid for angioedema
What is Quincke’s edema?
Angioneurotic edema is an overreaction of the body in response to an allergen. Unlike urticaria, when the reaction manifests itself on the skin in the form of a rash, with Quincke’s edema, the vascular component is more pronounced, and local edema extends to areas with loose subcutaneous fat – the neck, lower face, eyelids.Less commonly, there is swelling of the hands, feet, genitals and internal organs.
Approximately one in ten in life has at least once suffered this condition, but women of young and middle age are more susceptible to this disease. A chemical agent, drugs, food, contact with plants, an insect bite can provoke an allergic edema.
Symptoms of Quincke’s edema
It manifests itself in an increase in a separate part of the face or body, smoothing out the contours without any significant changes in the skin.The edema is dense, not squeezed by pressing on it. Feels like “tension” in the tissue, pain, itching inside. Edema in the mouth and neck can spread deeper into the larynx and cause suffocation, which occurs in every third case. There is a hoarseness of the voice, cough, shortness of breath up to a stop. It can cost your life if you don’t get medical attention on time.
What to do before the doctor arrives?
- Call an ambulance or go to the hospital on your own;
- Try to calm the patient,
- Eliminate the allergen causing the attack,
- Provide access to fresh air for the patient: unbutton the collar of the shirt, open the window, etc.,
Treatment of Quincke’s edema
Hospitalization in an ENT, allergy or therapeutic department is usually indicated. In a threatening situation, resuscitation measures can be carried out. Antihistamines are prescribed in the form of injections, since the possible edema of the internal organs reduces absorption in the gastrointestinal tract.
Introduce drugs for narrowing of peripheral vessels (ephedrine, caffeine), ascorbic acid, B vitamins, calcium preparations.
Those who have suffered from Quincke’s edema are shown a hypoallergenic diet that excludes chocolate, eggs, fish, citrus fruits, wheat, milk and some other foods. Recovery lasts up to several weeks, depending on the severity of the attack. For prevention, it is necessary to identify the provoking agent, try to avoid it. Also have antihistamines, sorbents in the medicine cabinet.
Quincke’s edema is a strong manifestation of an allergic reaction that requires immediate assistance from specialists.