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Date of last update: 10/14/2017.

Forum Name: Gynecology

Question: Edema, numbness and much discomfort with PCOS

 shanniboyd - Tue Sep 14, 2004 7:42 am

For a few months, I have had numbnes in my joints that come and go, along with pain. This is mostly in my thigh/hips and elbows. Several months ago I was having a terrible time sleeping because I don't sleep well on my back, but sleeping on my right side was making my right arm feel painful--the elbow would lock and the whole area felt crushed. And sleeping on my left side was bad because it made my right hip/thigh area feel painfully numb, like when a limb falls asleep but without the pins and needles feeling. For a few weeks, I would wake up on my back with a numbness in my thighs and when I felt one or both of my hips at least one was hot to the touch.

Those problems subsided for the most part--the numbness in my hips comes and goes, but isn't so profuse these days. But this weekend my feet swelled with fluid--I've had water retention, mostly in my hands before, but this was very noticeable swelling. I didn't really know what to do and thought it could be from eating some popcorn or being on a backwards sleep schedule that week. I had an apple cider vingar foot bath, drank a cup of tea with lots of water, and ate losts of grapes. I was afraid to eat something that would make it worse, so I just had more grapes and an apple. I first noticed the swelling late saturday night. I went to bed early sunday afternoon (like I said, I was on a nocturnal sleep cycle last week) and woke up at 8pm Sunday evening. Getting to sleep had been very difficult. I propped my feet up on pillows, but laying down was uncomfortable because every joint in my body just felt sore. My limbs, particularly arms and hands were also falling asleep and tingling whether I had them at my side, crossed, or above my head.

When I woke up that eveing, the fluid retention had not improved. I tried to go to sleep at 4am Monday morning (to get back on a day/night sleep schedule) but couldn't sleep well, so I decided to get up at 6:30 and get on with my day. I exercised for 30 minutes and when the swelling persisted later in the day, I bought a diurex. I took one water pill, and after several hours the swelling had gone down very little. So I took another one Monday evening and went to sleep at 8:30 pm.

I woke up at 6 am this morning and the fluid retention is pretty much gone. However, I don't know if this is something I should be corncerned about and if it's related to other symptoms I have been having, including a general feeling of well... just not feeling good.

In addition to this swelling, my toenails (particularly on both big toes) have been turning blue or purple. It happened this weekend and has been occurring I think ever since I experienced the numbness and pain in my hips. When my feet were swollen this weekend, they felt hot to the touch, but uscally my feet feel very cold. So cold, that I have trouble getting them warm, and it's a deep sensation that feels like frostbite. When it's worst, even stepping into lukewarm water hurts my feet. My hands always feel cold, but I've been like that for years.

Also, it isn't frequent, but I sometimes have difficulty swallowing food. It first happened when I was at a movie theater last winter. I was with my husband and was eating some popcorn. Suddenly I felt tight in the thraost and really didn't know how to swallow. The food felt stuck in the back of my throat and I started to panic that I would choke. I had just drank my bottle of water, so I nudged my husband to get me some water. It was really scary as I waited for him to bring the water to me and I tried to calm down. As soon as I had the water I was able to swallow. Since then, it's happened 6-8 times, but now I feel used to it. As soon as I feel tight in the throat, I remind myself to relax, reach for a liquid, and take a drink. But it's still frightening every time.

I don't know how that could be related my my health--I don't know what that's about but thought I should mention it. I'm a college student and cannot easily go to the doctor since we don't have insurance, so I was hoping someone could tell me what they might think my trouble could be and if this is something I can put off or not.

Thank you SO MUCH for your time.

 Dr. Russell M - Tue Sep 14, 2004 12:27 pm

User avatar Hi!

From reading your description, conditions that come to my mind include peripheral neuropathy, Raynaud phenomenon, Scleroderma, renal failure, lupus, and compartment syndrome. All in all, I would rather visit a doctor to get some workup done. But I could also be wrong, and your problems might just be normal variants too.

Would welcome other expert opinions in this regard.

 shanniboyd - Tue Sep 14, 2004 1:56 pm

Thank you very much for you feedback and taking the time to read my long post. I will try to see a doctor sometime soon.

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