Swollen ankles and swollen feet facts
Swelling of the ankle and feet is relatively frequent symptom in most people. In itself it does not represent a disease but rather the symptom of an underlying disease.
- Causes of swollen ankles and feet are numerous:
- Dependent swelling (edema)
- Blood clots
- Others (infrequent causes)
- Most people who spend time standing or sitting and those people with causes listed above are at risk for feet and ankle swelling.
- Swelling symptoms depend on the underlying cause so symptoms may range from a painless increase in foot and ankle diameter (size) to skin changes of color, texture changes that may be localized to one or both or ankles; other symptoms may include warm skin and ulceration with pus drainage
- Almost all feet and ankle swelling is diagnosed by clinical observation and physical examination; tests are ordered to diagnose underlying causes
- Treatment of swollen feet and ankles is dependent on diagnosing the underlying cause(s); some people require no treatment while others with underlying cause(s) may require several different treatments.
- Complications vary according to the underlying disease process and vary from no complications to skin ulcerations that can lead to infection and death
- Swollen ankles and swollen feet may be prevented in many people by simple methods, but in some individuals, reduction or prevention is dependent on more complex methods depending on the underlying cause(s).