Being confined for long periods, being overweight, taking certain medications or standing for too long are some causes of swollen feet in the elderly, explains Healthline. The abnormal buildup of fluid in the body is called edema.
Unless it's due to an injury, edema is typically not painful. The condition can develop in any part of the body, but the swelling is generally more evident in the ankles, feet and legs due to gravity, according to Healthline.
Most cases of edema are not serious, but there is a chance that the swelling may indicate an underlying health issue, such as heart failure, liver failure or kidney failure, notes MedlinePlus. Emergency medical care is necessary if shortness of breath, chest pain or chest tightness accompany the swelling.