Conditions & Symptoms

When patients have problems with congestive heart failure, angina, or heart attack, they trust Cardiovascular Medicine to help them heal.

Clinical Cardiology

We service all major cardiovascular and pulmonary conditions as well as offering diagnostic imaging, ongoing and chronic care, and long-term condition management. You can see cardiovascular specialists at both our Moline and Davenport locations.

Cardiac Imaging and Diagnostics

Our range of cardiac diagnostic tests can provide the information you need to make informed decisions about your healthcare.


Our care center provides a full spectrum of electrophysiology care, from diagnosis to treatment and management of your condition.

Invasive & Interventional Cardiology

We are leaders in providing invasive cardiology treatments that relieve your symptoms and lower your risk of complications from heart disease.

Vein & Vascular Care

Our team of physicians, researchers, and patient care specialists are focused specifically on cardiovascular best practices and lifesaving heart and vein care.

Procedural Lab

Our procedural lab is state-of-the-art, featuring one of the most technologically advanced vascular imaging systems available in an office setting.

Preventive Services

As the best line of defense against heart disease, our clinic specializes in preventive care, including advanced cardiac imaging, risk intervention, and personalized treatment planning.

CVM Locations

Explore the map below to see location options and find the clinic most convenient for you!

Leg Swelling

Leg swelling is a common condition that can have many different causes. It may result from issues with the venous circulation system, a heart condition, the kidneys, or the lymphatic system. When swelling in legs is caused by fluid retention in tissues, it is known as peripheral edema.

Understanding Leg Swelling

Edema is most noticeable in your legs and feet due to gravity pulling the excess fluid down. Though it may be caused by a temporary situation, such as sitting or standing for a long time, the presence of edema could indicate an underlying disease that needs to be treated separately.

Peripheral edema can happen with anyone at any age, but it is more common in older adults and pregnant women. It can involve one or both legs. Symptoms you may see with swelling in legs include:

  • Swollen, puffy legs
  • Heavy, achy, or stiff legs
  • Indentions/pitting in the skin after pressing on it
  • Skin that feels tight and warm
  • Difficulty putting on socks and shoes
  • Changes in skin pigmentation
  • Varicose veins

Treatment for Swelling in Legs

Treatment for swelling in legs will depend on the underlying cause. It is important to identify the reason for your symptoms so we know which treatment will be best.

We have many diagnostic tests that can show how well blood is flowing through your veins. These can include:

  • Venous Doppler ultrasound of the leg, a noninvasive test to observe blood flow and detect possible blood clots
  • Radiographic imaging, including CT scans, MRIs, or X-rays, to rule out other conditions that could be causing your symptoms

This diagnostic testing will determine our next steps. If we feel we need further testing to rule out something like a heart condition, we will arrange it.

The goal of treating venous disease is to improve blood flow in the blood vessels of your legs. Mild cases may be treated with compression stockings, leg elevation, strengthening leg muscles, and avoiding prolonged periods of standing.



Our treatments for venous disease are minimally-invasive, and most patients will be able to resume normal activity within two days. For radiofrequency ablation, non-thermal sclerosant, and non-thermal adhesive ablation, we encourage you to resume walking immediately. Sclerotherapy and stab phlebectomy take an additional 1-2 days for complete healing.

More on Leg Swelling

Causes of Peripheral Edema

The most common cause of peripheral edema is venous insufficiency, which means that the veins in your legs are damaged or weakened and blood flow to your heart is reduced. As a result, blood pools in your lower legs.

The condition affects up to 30 percent of the population, and it affects women more often than men. We usually diagnose venous insufficiency once we rule out other systemic diseases that could be causing symptoms, especially in those over 50.

Other potential causes of edema include:

  • Blood Clot. If edema along with pain occurs suddenly in one leg, it could indicate deep vein thrombosis. This serious condition requires emergency medical help.
  • Heart Failure. Blood can pool in your lower legs when the right side of your heart isn't pumping as it should, causing edema.
  • Pericarditis. Pericarditis is the inflammation of the thin outer membrane surrounding your heart. It can cause peripheral edema and chest pain.
  • Renal Issues or Failure. Narrowed or blocked arteries in your kidneys can interfere in the removal of waste products and fluids from your blood. The buildup of excess fluids can lead to edema.

Minimally-Invasive Treatment Options for Venous Disease

If you have a more advanced form of venous disease, we will recommend one of several minimally-invasive treatment options. They include:

  • Medicines: We may prescribe medications that increase blood flow through the vessels to be used along with other measures such as compression therapy.
  • Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA): We use a catheter to deliver heat into the affected vein, which seals and closes it. This leads to less blood pooling in the leg and improved overall blood flow. The treated vein becomes scar tissue that is absorbed by the body. Patients can resume normal activities the same day.
  • Sclerotherapy: This treatment involves injecting a solution directly into the vein, creating a scar within the vein and forcing blood to reroute through healthier veins. In some cases, we may need to do multiple sclerotherapy treatments. Most people typically resume normal activities in 1-2 days.
  • Stab Phlebectomy: We make tiny cuts in your skin through which we can remove varicose veins in sections. Stitches are not usually required. Most people that have the stab phlebectomy procedure typically resume normal activities in 1-2 days.
  • Non-Thermal Sclerosant: This minimally-invasive procedure treats veins in the legs through the injection of a foam solution that treats the affected vessel. The diseased vein collapses and the foam is deactivated.  Patients may resume some activities the same day.
  • Non-Thermal Adhesive Ablation: This procedure treats varicose veins to improve symptoms such as leg heaviness, pain, restlessness, itching, swelling, and ulcerations. We insert a medical adhesive that seals the vein and re-routes blood through nearby healthy veins. Patients can resume normal activities the same day.

Meet Your Illinois and Iowa
Cardiovascular Physicians

Our team of physicians, researchers, and patient care specialists are focused specifically on cardiovascular best practices and lifesaving heart and vein care. We hire and empower the best cardiovascular doctors in the nation right here in the Heartland.

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