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Swelling During Pregnancy

Overview

You may have some mild swelling because of normal fluid buildup during pregnancy. It's most common in your face, hands, or feet.

As your pregnancy continues, your uterus puts pressure on blood vessels that go to your legs. This may cause swelling in your feet and ankles. Normally, foot swelling gets worse during the day and goes away at night. Symptoms may develop slowly or suddenly.

Propping your feet, avoiding salty foods, and wearing support stockings may help.

Call your doctor if you have swelling of the face and hands that doesn't go away during the day. This may be a sign of preeclampsia, which can be dangerous if not treated. Preeclampsia is more likely when:

  • New swelling of your face, hands, or feet begins suddenly.
  • A sudden weight gain of more than 2 lb (0.9 kg) occurs over a 24-hour period, especially if your blood pressure is high.

Credits

Current as of: February 23, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Kirtly Jones MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology

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