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What are the health risks involved in swollen feet?

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Quick Answer

Swollen feet may indicate health issues that include infections and heart, liver or kidney disease, according to WebMD. Swollen feet may also be a sign of a foot injury or pre-eclampsia, a serious condition that can affect pregnant women. Certain medications can cause swollen feet.

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What are the health risks involved in swollen feet?
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Full Answer

Swelling in the feet may be a sign of an infection, states WebMD. This is particularly dangerous in people with diabetes or other nerve-related disorders. These people experience reduced pain sensation in their feet, so a foot infection can rapidly become serious. People with diabetes or other nerve problems that impact the feet need to monitor their feet daily for blisters, ulcers or other signs of infection. Organ diseases can also cause fluids to accumulate in the feet.

A foot injury may cause swelling if ligaments become stretched excessively, advises WebMD. Resting and elevating the foot, applying ice and wrapping it in a compression bandage can alleviate pain and swelling, but medical attention is necessary if these symptoms are severe or don't respond to home treatments.

While many pregnant women experience swollen feet, swelling that comes on suddenly or seems excessive may be a sign of pre-eclampsia, notes WebMD. High blood pressure and the presence of protein in the urine confirm this diagnosis, and the condition requires immediate medical attention.

Medications like hormones, steroids, diabetes medications, NSAIDs and calcium channel blockers can cause foot swelling, states WebMD. If the swelling is severe, the patient may require a medication change.

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