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What Are Possible Causes Of Intermittent Edema In Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients?

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Updated May 25, 2006

Question: What Are Possible Causes Of Intermittent Edema In Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients?
Peripheral edema (an abnormal buildup of fluids) in the ankles, feet, legs, and calves can be an associated symptom of rheumatoid arthritis. What are possible causes of intermittent edema in a person with rheumatoid arthritis?
Answer:

Peripheral Edema In Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients

Intermittent ankle swelling in rheumatoid arthritis is common and most likely occurs as a result of active inflammatory synovitis. Rheumatoid arthritis vasculitis (inflammation of blood vessels) with peripheral neuropathy (damage to the peripheral nerves) is also a consideration. Swelling of the ankle and calf may represent phlebitis (inflammation of a vein) or blockage of the lymphatic system (lymphedema), torn calf muscle with bleed, as well as other general medical conditions i.e. heart failure and kidney disease.

Editor note: Since edema can be a symptom of many serious medical problems, it is important to be evaluated by your doctor to determine the cause.

Related Resources - Peripheral Edema / Rheumatoid Arthritis

  • Lymphedema Vs Edema - Is There Any Correlation With Rheumatoid Arthritis?
  • Guide To Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Guide To Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Test Your Knowledge: Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Test Your Knowledge: Inflammation
  • Source: Answer provided by the late Dr. Raymond Federman, aka Dr. Bones, who passed away on September 2, 2003. The care of his patients even in retirement was always his joy.

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