Ruptured disc causing water retention?

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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 5948
   Posted 3/1/2012 5:10 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm really frustrated!  This disc problem has had far-reaching effects. 
For about a month, I've weighed 10 lbs more than normal (not that I care per se, but it's odd) and my feet and ankles have been swollen to one degree or another. Without trying to give all the details, I just wonder, first off - does anyone know if there's a correlation between this and a disc problem/sciatica?
My doctors seem to disagree on how to treat this.  I think they don't understand it themselves.
fibromyalgia, herniated disc L4-5, (with sciatica), bulging disc L5-S1, other assorted spinal deterioration, scoliosis, Hashimoto's, IBS, migraines, tachycardia, hearing loss (probably from Menieres Disease)

getting by
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Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 41836
   Posted 3/1/2012 6:32 PM (GMT -7)   
Maybe you need a water pill. I take diazide for blood pressure and it helped me get rid of water retention. It is used for both.

Maybe it could be a coincidence and have nothing to do with your back or sciatica. It is so hard to say anymore. We go through changes and we don't know if one thing relates to another or not. Just deal with one thing at a time. But if you are retaining water, I would talk to the doc about the diazide or some other duiretic(sp).

I hope that it doesn't bother you to much. But the ankle swelling would bother me. Well, the ten pounds would bother me also. lol...

I hope that you are having a good day today.

Hugs, Karen
Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia

fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression, allergies

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 350
   Posted 3/2/2012 9:49 AM (GMT -7)   
I don't think your disk would effect that, but then again Im not a Md. I have a severly ruptured disk at L5-S1, and bulging at L4-L5. I have had back pain since my early 20's, 38 now. I haven't had any problems with swelling, but everyone is different. I know someone that had severe nerve pain so bad they had to get surgery, and person had foot dropsy because of her disk, but no swelling in either one of these people. Swelling of the ankles and feet could be caused by numerous things, I think of fluid retention, vascular problems, kidneys, or heart problems. NOT SAYING you do, but guess being a cardiac nurse that's the first thing I think, could be something simple much salt? Not enough water? Are you taking new meds? Ibuprofen causes water retention if you take alot. Are you swelling all over or just in those places?

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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17499
   Posted 3/2/2012 10:26 AM (GMT -7)   
It could be because you are sitting far more than you usually do.  I know if I sit a lot, I will have lightly swollen ankles.  My ankles are super skinny so lightly swollen is a lot for me!
Also, are you drinking a lot of water?  You SHOULD!  Fliud retention can happen because you are dehydrated.  I know it sounds crazy to drink more water to get rid of water retention but it's true. 
Bottoms up!  Glug, glug, glug!  smilewinkgrin
Forum Moderator/Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Diabetes, Osteoporosis, Glaucoma, Scoliosis
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 5948
   Posted 3/2/2012 12:31 PM (GMT -7)   
It's hard to tell....the only place I can definitely SEE swelling is my left foot, which hurts anyway. And since the first time I elevated it, even that looks almost normal.

Yesterday I dropped something and without thinking, I squatted to get it, like I would have before....(for over a month now I've used my reacher for everything) felt so wrong, my legs felt tight and weak, (or maybe it was just the one) like they were never meant to support me. I freaked and immediately stood back up and had increased pain for the rest of the night all along the sciatic nerve. So I guess the tight feeling means my legs are swollen to some degree, even though I can't see it.

My surgeon says it could be dangerous, but then won't stick around long enough to discuss it....he didn't even look at my foot yesterday. Long story, I won't bore you with it! He doesn't like being questioned. (I'm so used to my GP, with whom I can talk out all my questions as 2 equals, that this really burns me.) I suppose if it were THAT important, he'd make sure I understand. Hopefully....

Yes, I'm taking lots of extra meds right now. Norco, Flexeril, Gabapentin, extra Nortriptyline. Tired of living in la-la land! Ready to be on the other side of this ordeal. Thanks for letting me vent - again!

fibromyalgia, herniated disc L4-5, (with sciatica), bulging disc L5-S1, other assorted spinal deterioration, scoliosis, Hashimoto's, IBS, migraines, tachycardia, hearing loss (probably from Menieres Disease)

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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 5948
   Posted 3/2/2012 12:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Our posts crossed, Sherrine. I love your advice - I always feel healthier when I drink a lot. Glug glug indeed!

And yes, I'm sitting 90% of the time. So that makes sense.

Thanks! :)
fibromyalgia, herniated disc L4-5, (with sciatica), bulging disc L5-S1, other assorted spinal deterioration, scoliosis, Hashimoto's, IBS, migraines, tachycardia, hearing loss (probably from Menieres Disease)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 1355
   Posted 3/4/2012 10:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Debbie your surgery is coming up soon so try to be patient with the surgeon if there is something else wrong in there I'm sure he will fix it. I am thinking its the inactivity I have days when my feet swell and today is one as I have been unable to get up other than to use the washroom and I needed help to get there.

I hope you soon get some relief and that no flares decide to pop in for a visit to make things even oh so much more ...interesting.
Take care

Insulin Dependant Diabetic, Fibromyalgia, Gerd, IBS, Sleep Apnea, COPD, Spondylolistesis, Diabetic Neuropathy, Fatty Liver, High Cholesterol

New Member

Date Joined Aug 2014
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/7/2014 8:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Herniated discs in lower back absolutely cause foot swelling. I have personally been dealing with this for months. The longer I'm on my feet, the worse the swelling becomes. Only my left side is affected due to my L4-5 impingement. after 6 months, foot drop is gone, most all lower leg numbness is gone, but half of my foot is still numb and swelling has now become a major problem for me. Opted no surgery since pain subsided quickly when this happened...just not worth the risk of coming out worse than pre-surgery, which is common. I can live with numb toes, but not pain. There is quite a lot of info on reputable, good medical sites as to the actual reason the foot swells with a herniated disc. I would be running from any doctor that advised otherwise as it is common with a serious impingement.

ak angel
Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 3197
   Posted 8/7/2014 5:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Debbie, have you had your heart checked out? I was having some swelling and occasional SOB with back issues at the same time. My heart Dr. Figured it out real quick. I had a issue going on with my heart called stiff heart can be caused by inflammatory diseases. I take lasix now which helps. Then he told me my back issues were not connected with my heart. He was right! We are all different, so I am not sure about your situation.

Raising your legs and feet above your heart will help the swelling too. I just went through a battle with severe back pain myself. This is the first time for me to go through this. I never knew how back pain can stop you from enjoying life. I am glad mine has got some better having removing that mass in my uterus. I hope you can get some relief soon.

Post Edited (ak angel) : 8/7/2014 6:29:08 PM (GMT-6)

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 387
   Posted 8/7/2014 6:18 PM (GMT -7)   
I have disc issues at L4 and L5. I have some numbness and tingling in my left foot. My left foot does get swollen and does not come down with elevation. I discovered that when I started swimming regularly, the swelling disappeared! Neither my doc or I really knew where the swelling was coming from, but we were both glad when it went away, wether it was from swimming or not!

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 5948
   Posted 8/7/2014 6:55 PM (GMT -7)   
This is a really old post, so I'm locking avoid confusion (especially mine :) Actually, I still do have some weird issues with that foot, almost 2 & 1/2 years after surgery...that foot and lower calf are slightly redder than the other one, very sensitive and never without some pain in the Sacroiliac area and all the way down - and always numb. But virtually no actual swelling that I can see.

Thank you, Angel, for thinking of me. I hope you continue to improve! That must have been some mass you had.

Heart, that's where my disc ruptured, L4-5. So we probably feel a lot of the same numbness and tingling. Ugh! I'll have to notice whether swimming helps (I only walk back and forth, but it makes me feel energized for the rest of the day.)

KWR, welcome! I'm glad you could avoid surgery! It would be a good idea to start your own thread, indicating you're a new member in the title; otherwise, your post might not get noticed as much.

Moderator, Fibromyalgia Forum

Fibromyalgia, degenerative disc disease, discectomy L4-L5 - (w/lots of Sciatic Nerve damage), frozen shoulder, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, IBS, migraine, dizziness (mostly from visual stimuli), elevated liver enzymes, tachycardia, hearing loss (probably Menieres).
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