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Swollen Feet: When it’s Normal and When to Worry

If your toes resemble sausages, find out why and what to do about it.

There are many things that happen to our bodies on a regular basis that we may not be aware of. For example, swelling frequently occurs in different places, and quite commonly in our feet. If you spend a lot of your time sitting throughout the day, fluid accumulates in your feet, which is the reason your shoes fit a little more snugly in the afternoons or evenings. And, while this is normal, there are situations when swelling becomes more serious.

When should you see a doctor about your swollen feet?

What can cause abnormal foot swelling?


Often foot swelling comes about due to the side effects of medication. Steroids, antidepressants, and medications for inflammation and blood pressure can all cause swelling in your feet. The same is true for medications that contain hormones such as testosterone or estrogen.


Many body parts swell and expand during pregnancy, including feet. However, if it comes on suddenly or it’s severe, the swelling could indicate preeclampsia, which is a serious condition. If there are other symptoms as well, such as nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, or headaches, you should talk to a doctor right away.


An injury such as a sprained ankle can cause your foot to swell. In many cases, doing as little walking as possible, and icing and elevating the foot will reduce the swelling and pain.


Swelling can also be a symptom of infection, especially if you have diabetes. Therefore, diabetics are encouraged to check their feet for signs of swelling every day. Nerve damage can numb pain and swelling can then progress rapidly.

Blood clot

When blood clots form in leg veins, they can prevent blood from returning from the legs back to the heart, which in turn can cause foot swelling. A superficial blood clot, which is just beneath the skin may not be serious, but a deep clot can end up being life-threatening. In addition to swelling, if there is pain and fever, this could indicate a deep clot.


Swelling in the feet could be a sign of a much larger issue. When kidneys aren’t working as they should, this can lead to the buildup of fluid. A symptom of liver disease is the leaking of blood from blood vessels, which can accumulate in the feet. 

A little bit of swelling usually isn’t a big deal, but if your feet are constantly blowing up and causing you discomfort, you need to do something about it. Dr. Nina Coletta can help relieve your pain. An expert in podiatric medicine, she will determine what’s causing the problem and come up with the best treatment solution. To make an appointment to see her, you can call our office at 954-452-4590.

Nina L. Coletta, DPM, PA

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