What Does Edema Mean for Me?
Ankle edema, or edema of the legs, is a condition characterized by swelling, particularly in the lower legs, ankles, and feet due to the accumulation of excess fluid.
Generally preceded by varicose veins and spider veins, ankle edema represents the next progressive state of venous insufficiency and is often the result of venous hypertension. Calf swelling, ankle swelling, and changes in skin pigmentation can occur due to fluid being forced into lymphatic and interstitial spaces.
Typically, these conditions cause severe pain and discomfort, particularly in the lower leg, calf, and ankle, where the proximity of the nerves causes the condition to worsen.
Venous insufficiencies, when in their earlier stages, tend to affect smaller and more superficial veins. However, ankle edema often affects a portion of the deep vein system and can create various complications if left untreated.