My father’s swollen feet

My 70 -year old father has been complaining of swollen feet for the past few weeks. His Blood Pressure (BP) was found to be normal. Kindly let me know what else could be causing his swollen feet.

Lawrence (by SMS)

 

Swelling of the legs, feet and ankles is a common problem in the elderly. The medical term for this is edema. Edema is the trapping of excess fluid in any part of the body, but occurs most commonly in the ankles, legs and feet. Apart from high Blood Pressure, other conditions that can cause swelling of the feet include; lack of exercise or sitting or standing still for too long, side effects of some medications, excessive salt intake as well as poor nutrition with inadequate intake of protein and B vitamins. In addition, some underlying diseases such as those affecting the kidney, heart, lungs including allergies and diabetes among others can also cause leg swelling. If edema is accompanied by shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, chest pain or one leg is swollen while the other one isn’t, the patient should seek immediate medical evaluation. Evaluation of a patient with edema includes a thorough history, physical examination and appropriate laboratory tests.

 

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