Causes of Swelling in Feet and Hands

Swelling of the feet or hands can be the result of common causes, such as injury, infection, or pregnancy. However, more serious conditions may need to be considered. For example, many heart, kidney and liver diseases can cause swelling due to an excessive build-up of fluid, known as edema. Fluid may accumulate in the chest (heart failure, pleural effusion, or pericardial effusion), in the abdomen (ascites), or the entire body (anasarca). This may result in a rapid weight gain over a short period of time as fluid accumulates. Treatment depends upon the underlying cause and often includes the use of diuretics.