Extra Pounds May Mean Leg Pain
Add this to the already long list of reasons to avoid obesity: An extremely painful condition called lymphedema resulting from blocked lymph nodes in the groin may be brought on by all those excess pounds. The blockage keeps lymphatic fluid from draining properly and that causes swelling and aching, and sometimes infections.
In a letter published in the May 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Arin Greene and colleagues wrote, "We now believe that obesity is a risk factor for lymphedema if the body-mass index becomes greater than 60."
A BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese. The average BMI of the patients in the study with lymphedema was a sky-high 70. Participants in the study who had a BMI that was lower than 54 had a normally functioning lymphatic system.
There is no cure for lymphedema, but compression and weight loss may help relieve the symptoms, Dr. Green told HealthDay.