ZocdocAnswersI injured my knee and now my calf and foot are swelling and hurting, what could be causing it?

Question

I injured my knee and now my calf and foot are swelling and hurting, what could be causing it?

I recently injured my knee. I've been to the er and the doctor for follow up. They believe torn ligament and ? MRI scheduled 3 weeks from now. I was taken off of ibuprofen because there was so much active bruising/bleeding in my knee. My question is, Today my calf hurts, my ankle and foot are really swollen and I have bruising around my ankle joint. My knee is warm but not hot. I am wondering if this is normal, if I should be worried. I am 33/F

Answer

I'm sorry to hear that you had such a serious injury to the knee, and that you are suffering from so much pain and swelling. It sounds like the over all plan that has been set up for you, including the MRI in a few weeks, is pretty standard for a serious sprain or ligament injury. Still, I recommend getting in touch with your primary care doctor (or orthopedic doctor) and letting them know what is going on. Sometimes, if there is significant bleeding around the knee that bleeding and bruising might track downward through the soft tissues towards the calf and ankle, mostly just because of gravity. Swelling throughout the leg can also occur because of general immobility from pain or stiffness. That being said, however, I do think it is worth getting in touch with your primary care doctor (or orthopedic doctor) and letting them know what is going on. It is worth having the leg examined to make sure that there is not ongoing bleeding or an infection, which can sometimes occur at the site of a large blood or fluid collection under the skin. Furthermore, the injury and immobility might put you at a higher risk of developing a blood clot in the leg, and that is something that your doctor will want to rule out as well. Good luck!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.