Swollen Feet and Ankles: Causes & Symptoms

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When you have swollen feet and ankles, it can be quite painful, and you may experience embarrassment or discomfort without any idea of what is causing the issue.

What are Swollen Feet and Ankles?

The swollen area may be around the heel and ankle bones, the top of the foot, and the space above the ankle. The area may be puffy and sensitive to the touch, and this swelling can often be extreme – even doubling the standard diameter and shape of your ankle or foot. Obviously, this is a concerning situation for many people. This condition is also called edema, although that is a more general term that is described as an excess of watery fluids collecting in the tissues and cavities of the body.



There are many common causes of ankle and foot swelling, some of which are more serious than others. Let us look at the most common causes of ankle and foot swelling:

  • Sprained ankles
  • Pregnancy
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Obesity
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Cirrhosis
  • Achilles’ tendonitis
  • PMS
  • Deep vein thrombosis


While the basic visible symptoms are bad enough, there are secondary symptoms of this condition, which should also be handled, and used to determine the root cause of the swelling. Some of these symptoms may include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Swollen hands or wrists
  • Puffy eyes
  • Weight gain
  • Headaches
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