Many medical conditions can cause edema (swelling). The following forms of edema are discussed in their own articles. Follow the links for detailed information.
A condition related to varicose veins called
chronic venous insufficiency
can cause swelling in the legs. Numerous natural treatments have substantial supporting evidence of effectiveness for this condition.
Women who have undergone a mastectomy for breast cancer may experience swelling in the arm near the affected breast. This condition is called lymphedema, and natural treatments that may help are discussed in the
as well as surgery may cause swelling as part of the healing process.
Congestive heart failure
can also cause leg swelling.
premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
often experience fluid retention prior to the onset of menstruation.
Edema frequently occurs during
Many of the treatments used for these conditions fall into one of two categories: bioflavonoids and diuretics.
Bioflavonoids have shown promise for conditions in which edema is caused by leaky blood vessels, including the first three items in the above list. The following relevant bioflavonoids or bioflavonoid sources have full articles in this database:
BilberryCitrus BioflavonoidsOPCs (Oligomeric Proanthocyanidin Complexes)Oxerutins
Many herbs are thought to have a diuretic effect, causing the body to increase its water excretion. This could reduce edema in the remaining items on the above list. Herbs with apparent diuretic effects include:
Bratman S, Girman A.
Mosby’s Handbook of Herbs and Supplements and their Therapeutic Uses.
St. Louis, MO: Mosby, Inc.; 2003.
Christie S, Walker AF, Lewith GT et al. Flavonoids—a new direction for the treatment of fluid retention?
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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