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Dr. Phil, MD
Dr. Phil, MD, Medical Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 56211
Experience:  Medical Doctor Trained at a Top Academic Institution
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I have a fluid build-up in my right ankle and calf only. I

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I have a fluid build-up in my right ankle and calf only. I was diagnosed with a 'touch' of arthritis in the ankle. It doesn't swell all the time, but when it is swollen, it hurts quite a bit. It pits easily when pressed, I cannot move the ankle without it hurting. The swelling does not decrease when elevated. I thought it was a reaction to my allergy to milk protein, but I am positive I haven't had any milk protein recently. I have low blood pressure, an prolonged elevated C-reactive protein, no kidney problems. I had a throidectomy 9/2011. I am taking 2.5 grain Nature-Throid 2x/day, 45000 Vitamin A Palmitate, 10000 Vitamin D3, Methyl Folate, and Methyl B12.
This has happened off and on for years, but it is like taking the car to the mechanic. By the time I get an appointment with my Dr, the swelling has reduced. What can I do to stop this from happening? I know it can't be good for the joint, to have this swelling so often. It happens at least a few times a month and last from a few days to a few weeks.
Oh, also, I am 40 years old, do not smoke or drink, but am obese. 5'8" and 250lbs. I occasionally exercise by walking or doing laps in my pool. I have a desk job, but get up and walk around about every hour.
Hello. I'm Dr. Phil, licensed and practicing Internal Medicine Physician. Excellent service is my goal.
Thanks for this excellent question.
I'm sorry you are having this problem with your leg
I need to gather more information in order to give you the best answer possible.
Have you had any tests on the liver or belly/groin?
Any prior surgeries?
Do you take any diuretics or use compression socks?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I have not had any liver, or belly/groin tests. I have had a thyroidectomy on 9/29/2011, I had a tubal ligation about 19 years ago. I had a breast reduction about 15 years ago.

I was taking desmopressin for a short period (about 3 weeks), but stopped about a week ago due to signs of low sodium levels.

I don't use compression socks, I don't even wear normal socks because they leve 1/2 inch indented rings on my ankle. I just wear sandles.

Thanks Melanie. Did this start after the tubal?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Thank you Melanie
Lymph nodes in the groin (that drain fluid) were likely disrupted during the procedure.
This is a very common cause of leg swelling on one side
I recommend the following
1)low salt diet
2)compression stockings (your doctor can give you these)
3)leg elevation at rest
4)a mild diuretic like HCTZ 12.5 mg daily.
This should help
I hope this helps.
If you have more questions, just reply. :)
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Is there anything I can do to help the lymph node? The recommendations seem to be directed at the symptoms, but not the problem.

No there isn't Melanie
Once the lymph nodes are damaged, that's it.
Dr. Phil, MD and other Medical Specialists are ready to help you
Thanks Melanie. I noticed you rated Ok service
I strive for excellent
Would you like more information?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Well, I gave it an okay because the dx was excellent, but I had issue with the treatment recommendations. I did a google search and found information on lymphatic drainage massage. I followed that with looking at youtube video from a licensed massage therapist showing self administration of lymphatic drainage massage. I tried the massage and the swelling reduced in less than 30 minutes, with no compression socks, leg elevation, or medication.

The massage dosen't heal the damaged lymph nodes, but it helps the lymphatic fluid move where it needs to go.

It would have saved me a few hours of research if you had recommended massage also.

I'm sorry Melanie.
I appreciate the information.
I will recommend that in the future.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you, ***** ***** for the dx. I have seen almost a dozen doctors over the years, and you were the first one to put two and two together. I would have never thought the tubal would have caused this. Thank you so much!

You're welcome :)
I wish you the best.