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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 31326
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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I have mild to moderate swelling in my left ankle and foot.

Customer Question

I have mild to moderate swelling in my left ankle and foot. Over the past two days I have ridden in a car traveling from Albuquerque, NM to Knoxville, TN. The first day we traveled about 9 hours and stayed the night at a hotel. I did not notice any swelling that evening. The next day (yesterday, July 31st) we traveled for 16 hours, stopping about every 3 hours. I did get out and walk some, but not much. We got home early this morning and I noticed the tightness and swelling. I elevated my foot while I slept, and although it seems to be slightly better this morning, it is not entirely resolved.

I am 33-years-old with no history of DVT or heart issues. The swelling is not hot, red, or painful. This is the first time in my life I have ever traveled this far. Do I have reason to be concerned? How long should it take to go away?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 5 years ago.

A one sided swelling in ankle and foot with tightness need an high index of suspicion. Especially with a history of prolonged travel and immobilization. We work on the highly cautionary side. So an ultrasound (colored doppler study) is mandatory to rule out deep vein thrombosis. This can be just a dependent edema due to prolonged sitting, but it is better to be safe than sorry. So going to ER or an urgent care clinic is advisable.

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Dr. Arun