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10 Alarming Medical Conditions That Can Lead To Puffy Feet

December 3rd, 2018

Sometimes, our feet can become swollen from prolonged periods of sitting or standing. However, they can also be a red flag if they stay swollen or are followed by other symptoms. Here are 10 reasons why you could have swollen feet.

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Flickr/Ivan Lian Source: Flickr/Ivan Lian


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Flickr/Ish Frost Source: Flickr/Ish Frost

One of the most common reasons for a woman’s feet to be swollen is pregnancy. Although, if the swelling is severe and is accompanied by symptoms such abdominal pain, headaches, frequent urination, nausea, vomiting, or vision changes, seek medical attention immediately.

These signs could point to preeclampsia, which leads to high blood pressure and protein being in the urine.

Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT is developed from a blood clot that is usually in the legs. It can cause pain and swelling in the legs and feet. DVT can also eventually lead to the blood clots breaking loose and traveling to the lungs.

Achilles Tendonitis

You may experience inflammation of your Achilles tendon, which is located at the back of your heel. There is also pain and/or irritation involved as well. Achilles tendinitis is caused by repetitive stress being placed on the tendon.

Swelling may be present all the time, but get worse throughout the day with walking and standing. Those who are more at risk tend to be athletes or those who work a job where they are on their feet for a majority of the day.


Arthritis of the feet is referred to as osteoarthrosis. It can develop over time due to wear-and-tear that happens naturally. If your feet and ankles are swelling and in a lot of pain that makes it difficult to stand or walk for prolonged periods of time, you may have osteoarthritis.


Lymphedema is generally a concern for those who have had their lymph nodes removed or damaged from cancer treatments. It can result from blockage in the lymphatic system, which cause the lymph fluid to build up and your feet to swell.


If you experience swelling after an injury to your feet or ankles, it could be a symptom of cellulitis. Cellulitis is an infection of the skin and the tissues underneath. It results from the bacteria entering broken skin. Those who are more at risk include those with diabetes, those who have circulatory problems, those with liver disease, and those with skin disorders.


Gout is a form of arthritis that can affect many people. It affects the joints of toes, most commonly the big toe. Its symptoms include sudden and severe stints of pain and swelling in the toe joints.

Foot Bursitis

Bursitis is often caused by an injury or by repetitive motions over time. Those who are older are more at risk for bursitis. Bursitis can affect many different joints, but commonly it can affect the Achilles tendon. Symptoms include pain and swelling or loss of motion.

Venous Insufficiency

One of the symptoms of venous insufficiency is the swelling of the ankles and feet. It is caused by the blood not being able to circulate properly from the feet to the heart. It can lead to changes in your skin, ulcers, and possibly infections.

Medication Side Effect

Drugs such as oral contraceptives or hormone replacement therapy can cause swelling in the feet and ankles. Antidepressants and diabetes medications can also cause this side effect. Be sure to read all of the information on any prescriptions you are currently taking to rule out any possible reasons for why you have swollen feet.

Know When to Seek Medical Attention

Swollen feet can indicate serious diseases such as those of the heart, liver, or kidney. If you notice any sudden changes in the swelling or it is prolonged and does not become better with rest and fluid intake, be sure to seek medical attention.

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Sources: [American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Little Things, MayoClinic, MayoClinic, WebMD, WebMD, WebMD]