Dr. Paul Scanlon on COPD

This Mayo Clinic Medical Edge Weekend features Dr. Paul Scanlon on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD.

Medical Edge Weekend 9-25-10

2 Comments

  1. Posted September 22, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    why would legs and feet become extremely swollen and the intire feet and legs become rock hard?

    • jstreed
      Posted September 25, 2010 at 8:04 am | Permalink

      Rita,

      Here is a reply from Dr. Scanlon:

      Swelling of the legs and feet is a common problem. The most common cause is fluid retention. Numerous serious conditions may contribute to this. Limited heart function or kidney function aggravated by excess salt intake are common contributing factors. Obstruction of veins or lymphatic vessels may also contribute. In persons with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), the right side of the heart can be strained by lung disease, causing back pressure on the veins returning blood to the heart. This results in edema of the legs and feet.

      Depending on the cause, treatment for swelling of the legs and feet may include regular elevation of the legs, mechanical compression stockings, diuretics (fluid pills), anticoagulants (blood thinners), oxygen, or other more specific therapy for the heart, lungs, kidneys, or vessels. Because of the complexity of possible causes, it is best to have your physician evaluate this condition and advise you on the best approach to treatment.


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