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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18664
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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My Dad is 69, In the day time his legs swell up, at night they

Customer Question

My Dad is 69, In the day time his legs swell up, at night they go down again. He has a constant buzzing in his head. He has no balance and can only walk with a walking aid. He believes this is to do with a fractured skull that he obtained from hitting his head on a metal beam 3 or 4 years ago, he has had an MRI scan and CT scan, which do not show this.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
Hello from JustAnswer.
How long has he had the leg swelling?
What evaluation has been done for the leg swelling?
Does he have any other symptoms, such as shortness of breath?
Has he seen an ENT specialist for the buzzing and imbalance?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I think he has had the leg swelling for about three years, though it has got worse over the last 18 months.

He doesn't have shortness of breath.

I don't think any evaluation has been done for the leg swelling.

He has had a pressure test on his eyes, which did not show any abnormalities

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for the additional information.

The swelling would typically be unrelated to the buzzing and imbalance.

The swelling in the legs that get better at night is typically from fluid accumulation. The improvement during the night does not help differentiate the cause of fluid accumulation. The fluid accumulates in the legs during the day because gravity will tend to pull the fluid into the lowest part of the body. When lying down, gravity is no longer pulling the fluid into the legs, so the swelling improves.

When looking for the reason for the swelling, there are several possibilities to consider. The most worrisome would be from heart failure, which can cause fluid to back up behind the heart. However, there would usually be other symptoms present, such as shortness of breath, so it is good that he is not having other symptoms. Other systemic conditions to consider would be from liver or kidney dysfunction. Another common cause of leg swelling is from chronic venous insufficiency, in which the veins do not work well to return blood back to the heart from the legs. In someone with no other symptoms, this would be particularly common.

Ultimately, it will require a proper evaluation to determine the cause of the swelling. If the swelling is due to a systemic condition, then treatment would be oriented towards that condition. If the swelling is found to be due to chronic venous insufficiency, then the primary treatment would be medical compression stocking, such as TED stockings.

From the perspective of the buzzing and imbalance, since he has already had neurologic imaging for evaluation, the next step would be to see an ENT specialist, and particularly one that focuses on diseases of the inner ear. For people with these symptoms, the primary cause is usually found to be a neurologic disorder or an inner ear disorder. So, he should be seen by an ENT specialist to pursue a complete evaluation.

If I can provide any further information, please let me know.











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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Could this have been caused by my Dad being a Chauffeur in a car for long periods of time with insufficient exercise?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 3 years ago.
It would depend upon what is found to be the cause. Lack of exercise is a risk factor for heart disease and chronic venous insufficiency, so it could have a role for these conditions.