The amount of swelling that occurs with edema may be just a minor annoyance, or it can be downright uncomfortable, but either way, it could be a sign of an underlying problem with your heart or blood vessels. Dmitry Gorelik, MD, is a board-certified cardiologist who can determine and treat the cause of your leg edema. To schedule a consultation, call the offices of Dr. Dmitry Gorelik in West Orange, New Jersey, or book an appointment online today.
Edema refers to swelling in your bodily tissues due to an excess accumulation of fluid that typically affects your arms, hands, legs, feet, or ankles. The fluid may come from the lymph system, tiny blood vessels that are leaking, or simply from water retention, but edema is not related to inflammation.
Painless edema commonly occurs as people get older, in those who are overweight, and after sitting or standing for a long time. Edema can develop when you retain water after eating too much salt. It’s also common during pregnancy. Some medications may lead to leg edema, including steroids, estrogen, and medications that lower blood pressure.
Edema can also signal serious health problems because it can be caused by serious health issues like:
Consequently, it’s important to determine the root cause of edema when it occurs.
Edema can be a sign of heart failure, which occurs when your heart doesn’t pump enough blood throughout the body. Heart failure can cause edema in two ways. As the heart doesn’t work properly, blood in veins backs up, and fluid builds up in tissues. Additionally, the kidneys may not be able to eliminate enough salt and water, so the body retains fluids.
Edema is one of the top seven signs of heart failure. It’s vital to get medical attention as soon as possible for heart failure, so please don’t hesitate to call Dr. Gorelik for a comprehensive evaluation if you have any of these symptoms:
So if you experience edema, you should schedule a consultation with Dr. Dmitry Gorelik right away.
The most important step is to determine the cause of leg edema. Dr. Gorelik will review your medical history, perform a thorough physical exam, and order any necessary tests or diagnostic services.
If you have an underlying health concern, whether a problem with your heart, blood vessels, liver, kidney, or another condition, it must be properly treated.
Depending on the outcome of your physical exam and testing, Dr. Gorelik may prescribe medications to relieve edema, compression stockings, or lifestyle changes such as eating less salt, losing weight, and staying active.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Dmitry Gorelik, call the office or book an appointment online.