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short of breath and swelling of ankles (edema)
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short of breath and swelling of ankles (edema)

Yes I'm a 36 yr old male, and for many months i've had these symptoms:

palpitations (told they were early beats)
weakness lightneadedness in episodes
shortness of breath and fading vision caused by resistance movements (climbing stairs, barbell curls), but not cardio exercise

more recently:
equal edema in both lower legs and ankles, and now cramping, vague pain, and tingling in my left leg.   left toes turn numb during cardio exercise but the pain doesn't really get much worse


I exercise 5 days per week (30 min of cradio).   But these problems persist, and I am working hard through the symptoms.  
I just moved to a new town and have a new doctor, so I'm asking you if everything is okay since I don't know him too well.    I had a normal stress echo, holter, chest xray and 5-6 blood tests with urinalysis.   Not much was said about my ankles except to keep them elevated but of course this isn't practical, even though it does help the cramping in my left leg.

I am wondering,  why is this all happening together?   There must be some connection?    Am I safe to ignore this and work thru the symptoms?   That is what I'm wondering most.
I also have this theory that the swelling in my legs is causing restricted blood flow back to my upper body and causing the palpitations, short of breath, fading vision, weakness, etc?    

Can a diuretic make me all better you think?   Is it safe to ignore these symptoms with the normal testing i've had?  Or do I need another test?
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242588_tn?1224275300
Palpitations and lightheadedness could be due to impairment of venous blood return to the heart, reflected in the leg and ankle edema.  The return of blood is also compromised, for many people, by increased pressure within the chest with lifting weights, called Valsalva maneuver.

The main clue as to what is going on probably resides in the leg edema, definitely abnormal in an otherwise healthy 36 year old man.  The differential diagnosis of leg and ankle swelling is familiar to all doctors.  Diuretics may provide some reduction of edema but are not the answer and could defer finding the real cause.  Swelling is seen with clotting in the large leg and pelvic veins, heart failure, liver failure, kidney failure, low serum albumin due to nephrotic syndrome, pulmonary hypertension presumably not evident on the ECHO and a number of other causes.

The less than completely healed leg lesion could also be evidence of a circulatory problem.

You need to find a doctor who will direct his/her attention to the major causes of leg swelling and order the appropriate testing.  If your new doctor chooses not to pursue this, you should find another doctor who will.  What you are experiencing should not be ignored, with the hope that it will go away.
3 Comments
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PS- PS- On my left shin there is a relative small (3 inch x 1 inch) area that is slightly darkened and is a point of sensitivity, almost like a bruise that is 80% healed but won't go away...
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Avatar_n_tn
Swelling of the ankles and the other symptoms you describe could indicate a problem with your heart.I would suggest that you go back to your doctor and ask him for a referal to a cardiologist to make 100% sure that everthing is ok and leave off on the exercise until they give you the all clear.I would not take diuretics without the oki from your doctor as theuy can cause depletion of minerals in your body. I hope that all works out well for you
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