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Pauline, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 8631
Experience:  Medical Doctor & Registered Pharmacist. Worked as Community pharmacist for 17 years.
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swelling of feet, legs, arms & hands with tingling in hands.

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I am 39 female. some days my boots are loose, other days I cannot even do them up. i get pins and needles in my hands at night similar to the carpal tunnel syndrome i had during pregnancy (5 years ago). I am overweight by about 1-1/2 stone and am a busy working mum of 2. I take citalopram and amitryptiline and have been suffering from stress for some time now. Is this a side effect of medication or simply fluid retention. Can I take an over the counter medication for this bearing in mind my other medication?

If you have swelling of hands and feet then you need to have a check by your doctor.

There are a variety of reasons for swollen ankles and feet including high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems, circulation problem, kidney problem and something putting pressure on a major vein (the Inferior vena cava)

Transient swelling could be related to prolonged immobility causing calf muscles failing to pump fluid back into the circulation. Other causes include varicose veins, side-effects of some drugs and being overweight.

A mild diuretic would be the first action, together with compression hosiery.

Keep your legs elevated at a high angle when you can to encourage drainage and if you have a sedentary job ensure that you get up and move around every hour.

Avoid caffeine drinks, but do continue to drink water. Reduce your salt intake too. There is nothing over the counter suitable unless the swelling is only occurring just around the time of your period. In which case there may be some herbal remedies which may help. Your medication is unlikely to be the cause unless you can put a direct relationship between onset of symptoms and starting your tablets.

Pauline and 5 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Reply to Pauline's Post: my wrists are noticeably swollen as are my fingers. Do i need to see my doctor urgently?

If you had any problems with your breathing, any lower back pain, urinary symptoms or there was any rash then I would see an out of hours doctor today, otherwise you can ring your own doctor tomorrow to arrange an appointment.

Is there any color or temperature change to your hands?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Reply to Pauline's Post: No there isnt any colour change or temp change. My wrists feel achey but thats it.

In that case, I would recommend some paracetamol for the ache. Remove all jewelery in case the swelling continues, and if possible sit with arms elevated (although I appreciate this can be difficult).

Your doctor will need to run some blood tests to check your kidney function and electrolytes.