15245238 tn?1439351704

I'm not sure if this is the right area. Edema.

There was no general area for "Swelling" or "Legs" So i'll post this here.

I'm a 25 year old female. I'm 5'4" and i'm 270 pounds. Yes, I'm big. I get it.

I've had heart troubles when I was younger. Had to have open heart surgery for a hole in my heart.
I still have a murmur, and it's been checked out by doctors, and it's not big enough to close. It's too small.
They said it wouldn't affect me.


I've been having problems for as long as I can remember ( maybe the past 5 years ) with my left foot/ ankles swelling. Seems to swell most in the summer time with heat. (I had to buy an air conditioner for my bedroom last year, because it was too hot in my room. This year, the swelling isn't as bad.)Standing on it causes swelling on it too.. ( for long periods of time ) and when I drink alcohol it tends to swell. Only sometimes though. Usually goes away.

I'm wondering, at some point, is it normal for feet to swell in these conditions? Or should I get it checked on? A few summers ago, It was so big that I couldn't even get a sandal on.

I elevate it, and take advil most times, and that seems to help.

Also, I've had an EKG done and blood work recently, and everything came back normal, so I dunno if it's something medical or not.

Any advice would be great. Thanks for your time.
6 Responses
Avatar universal
You could be retaining fluid you might could  try a diuretic talk to your doctor about Lasix which is water pill I'm not overweight and my feet and ankles swell if I stand for long periods of time
363281 tn?1590104173
Yes, it is very normal to have swelling when in the conditions you mentioned. Heat almost always causes swelling, that is why so many ladies rings are tight in the summer.  Standing, as well, will cause swelling as the blood is pooling in your lower extremities, try walking in place if you have to stand for any length of time.  Alcohol is notorious for retaining fluid.

I would try to take a good, herbal diuretic, drink more water, yes, this too, acts as a diuretic, avoid large amounts of salt, and do daily walking.
14977123 tn?1437775098
You are young to be this height to weight disproportionate so I have to first advise you to find a healthy eating plan which will "start the process".
It wouldn't surprise me that you have ankle edema but it usually doesn't occur until people are older.
I would make SURE and get thyroid testing and at least a chest x ray to look for heart size. Good luck!  
Avatar universal
Hi, I feel your pain, I retain 10-20 pounds of water a day depending on heat, the amount of walking i get, how late I eat at night etc. I have done every western test with no answers, chinese medicine however does help. I took Lasix and spironolactone both diuretics for about 4 years, problem is water always comes back! I learned for me there was a difference between bloating - which can be alleviated by not eating after 7, and certain foods especially raw, sugar, cold in nature and temperature, spicy hot  make me more bloated no matter the time of day, this is called spleen qi deficiency in traditional chinese medicine. Walking daily helps as much as the diuretics did. For me drinking more water just caused more retention. That can help some people, but not all. You can try massaging or moxa your spleen 6 and 9 especially, look up where they are online, if they are tender you likely have a spleen problem but spleen in chinese medicine is NOT the same as spleen in western medicine. If that stuff pans out, I would see an acupuncturist. I have pitting edema in my feet. It's only gotten worse in the last several years but I have less time to take care of myself than I used to. Good luck, I know it ***** :)
Avatar universal
Really? Rhymes with mucks unacceptable?!
4851940 tn?1515694593
270lbs equals to 19.3 stone.  At the height of 5'4" , yes you are classed as morbidly obese.  You can change this and get much fitter by changing your lifestyle and doing some form of exercise - any is better than none.

With regard to your ankles swelling, this has nothing to do with being overweight.  Even at that weight, if you were healthy, your ankles would not swell like that.

Swellings of the ankles can be related to heart and/or kidney problems.
If you experience swelling in other areas of your body too (oedema) this can be caused by hormonal problems.  Some women experience a lot of fluid retention before starting their period.

There are other medical reasons for fluid retention and you should speak with your doctor to identify the cause of your ankles swelling.

You are doing the right thing by elevating your legs as much as you can.

Some foods will naturally cause fluid retention and the worst are salt and sugar.

I suggest you follow a healthy and well balanced diet.  Cut out or cut down on all sugary, processed and junk foods.  Cut out or cut down on sugary drinks, that includes squashes, fruit juices, alcohol, energy drinks.  Drink more water.  It is very wrong to assume that because you have fluid retention that you should cut down on fluids.  It does not work like that.  Only do that if your doctor advises you.

Tea and coffee are a diuretic.  There are foods that are diuretic - celery, cucumber.  You may find more on the web.

Look on the website for the "healthy plate", this will give you a chart of the quantities of the types of food your healthy eating should consist off.

Any type of exercise is great.  You can dance at home, go for a walk, go swimming.  Swimming is great because the water supports the body allowing you to exercise.

If you do no form of exercise at the moment, start by going for a 5 minute walk, for example and gradually build up the length of the time and the distance.  

You can buy without a prescription, herbal diuretics from large supermarkets, but my advice for you is to make an appointment to see your doctor.  As you already have a heart condition, the doctor may prescribe a specific diuretic that is available for people who have heart problems.

Your doctor may also be able to refer you to a dietician with help regarding weight loss.  The healthy weight loss to aim for is 1-2lbs a week.  In the first week of starting to eat healthily, you may have a very large weight loss, most of it will be fluid loss.

Best of luck
Let me know how you get on.
Best wishes.
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the General Health Community

Top General Health Answerers
363281 tn?1590104173
Nelson, New Zealand
1756321 tn?1547095325
Queensland, Australia
19694731 tn?1482849837
80052 tn?1550343332
way off the beaten track!, BC
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Discharge often isn't normal, and could mean an infection or an STD.
In this unique and fascinating report from Missouri Medicine, world-renowned expert Dr. Raymond Moody examines what really happens when we almost die.
Think a loved one may be experiencing hearing loss? Here are five warning signs to watch for.
When it comes to your health, timing is everything
We’ve got a crash course on metabolism basics.
Learn what you can do to avoid ski injury and other common winter sports injury.