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Swelling

Description

The term swelling is used to describe enlargement of any organ, tissue, or skin. Swelling can occur internally or externally. Swelling can be generalized throughout the body or it may be localized to a specific body part. Swelling is usually caused by a buildup of fluid inside tissues and it may also occur as a result of inflammation. Swelling also causes rapid weight gain in a very short time period.

Causes

Swelling of a body part may arise because of:

  • An Injury to bone or skin.
  • Insect bites and allergies also produce swelling.
  • Bacterial and viral infections have symptoms of swelling as a result of an inflammatory process.
  • Standing for a longer period and keeping the legs unsupported for a long time.
  • Pregnancy
  • hormonal changes
  • Infection 
  • Menstruation
  • Hives
  • Rash 
Risk factors
  • Medicines for treating high blood pressure and heart diseases like ACE inhibitors, few diabetes drugs, steroids and few contraceptives may also cause facial swelling or leg and ankle swelling.
  • Cancer chemotherapy drugs also cause fluid retention and swelling.
  • Medical condition like deep vein thrombosis DVT (a clot forms in veins of legs mostly) causing leg swelling.
  • Certain medical conditions like arthritis and osteoporosis present with knee and ankle swelling.
  • Heart and kidney failure, a venomous bite produces general body swelling and is an emergency.
  • Bloating is another cause of swelling, usually seen in patients with irritable bowel disease.
Symptoms

Different causes of swelling produce different symptoms in addition to discomfort and pain.

  • Insect bites and injury-related swelling is painful, itchy and there’s redness on the skin.
  • The infectious and allergic process produces inflammation which is associated with fever and flu-like symptoms, vomiting, cough and wheezing when the allergy affects the respiratory system.
  • Lower legs, ankles, face, and fingers swell up in medical problems of heart and kidney.
Diagnosis

Diagnosing the cause of swelling will require:

  • Information about the medicines in use or any medical condition and a history of injury or insect bites.
  • Examination of body parts for signs of abscess (pus) and inflammation - fever, pain, redness of skin etc.
  • A swollen body part will be visible easily but when the swelling is internal due to some organ disease or trauma then an ultrasound, CT scan or an MRI is done to see any tumor, clot or blockage causing swelling inside the body.
  • Blood and urine tests will help in identifying an infection.
Management

Treatment is symptomatic for swelling:

  • Anti-histamines (anti-allergy) will give relief from allergy, itching, and swelling caused by bites.
  • Steroids for relief from inflammation.
  • Chymotrypsin inhalers and topical creams will reduce the swelling.
  • Antibiotics and antivirals for treating infections.
  • Surgery to remove an abscess and tumor.
When to consult a doctor?

You are advised to consult a doctor if there is a constant increase in the size of your swelling, there is a general feeling of discomfort and malaise, your swelling is impairing the normal function of the affected organ or body part, or if there is worsening of your symptoms.

Available Medicine for Swelling

Chymoral Forte

Rs.204.23

AGP