What Causes Leg Edema?

Q:
What causes leg edema?

A:
Leg edema, or leg swelling, means the swelling in legs, it can occur in any part of the legs, including the feet, ankles, calves and thighs. Leg edema results from many causes: fluid buildup, inflammation or injuries, diseased tissues or joints, etc.

Leg edema can be caused by inflammation in leg tissues. Factors related to inflammations include:

  • ACL injury
  • Achilles tendon rupture
  • Baker’s cyst
  • Cellulitis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Sprained ankle
  • Knee bursitis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

Leg edema can also be caused by fluid retention (fluid buildup) in leg tissues, which is called peripheral edema. Factors related to fluid buildup include:

  • Cirrhosis
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Heart failure
  • Hormone therapy
  • Nephrotic syndrome
  • Pericarditis
  • Pregnancy
  • Sitting for a long time
  • Thrombophlebitis
  • Venous insufficiency

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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.