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Swollen and painful knees after a fall, Lymphedema.

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I fell 3 weeks ago and went to urgent care- xray showed no broken bones. They said it was sprained. After about 13 days my husband (atheletic director) said that it should better than it did. It is very swollen up to the knee and painful to touch. The pain is constant and throbbing. Thereis no way to sit to get any relief. It is red, hot, and swollen. I went to my primary dr and my blood pressure was 190/126 so she was concerned my heart was causing it. She sent me to the er and ekg showed I had a heart previously. He mentioned going to heart dr and orthopedic dr to see if it is something with the inner workings of the foot -tendons, ligaments etc- and that an mri would help them. I went to the orthopedic dr today and he just looked at it and saidit is a sprain and he used the term lymphederma. I just know it is extremely painful and does not let up. Can you give me your thoughts on it. I sure don't want to live like this the rest of my life....


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Category: Family Physician-GP
Dr. John Monheit is online now

Expert:  Dr. John Monheit replied 4 Days.

Thanks for the query. I can understand your pain and will try to answer the best possible. . There is a high possibility that after your fall u may have developed lymphedema-primary or secondary, of which secondary lymphedema is quite common with trauma. Lymphedema is the accumulation of fluid (lymph) in the subcutaneous tissues due to defective lymphatic drainage. These patients usually develop swelling in the foot (n tree trunk deformity), dull aching to severe pain, fever, malaise.

I would recommend you to follow these methods to relieve your pain:

a) Elevation of the limb, exercise, weight reduction.

b) avoid lifting heavy weights, prolonged standing

c) Use of compression stockings and massaging the limb.

d) Diethyl carbamazine citrate (DEC) 100mg three times a day for 3 weeks.

You can also consult your doctor for the use of appropriate antibiotics and painkillers.

Hope this helps. If you have any further queries please feel free to ask.

Thank you.


Dr. John Monheit
Category: Family Physician-GP
Experience: 
Residecny: North Colorado Family Medicine
Medical School: The Chicago Medical Center
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