Solid and fluid edema


What is edema? (Expert Homeopathy: Dr. Anutosh Chakraborty)

Edema means abnormal accumulation of fluid in the tissue space and serous sacs. The liquid might be unusually collected in free subcutaneous tissue like the lower eyelid, tissues in outside genitalia, serous sacs like peritoneum, pleura, pericardium, dependent part of the body like leg, etc.

Formation of fluid edema -

1) Primary factors -

A) Increased capillary permeability - Permeability of the capillaries may be increased due to the anoxic condition or action of toxins. Increased capillary permeability allows excess fluid and plasma along with plasma proteins to pass into the tissue space. But once the proteins start coming out of the vessels, a vicious cycle will start. Thus tissue osmotic pressure will rise and colloidal osmotic pressure of blood will fall and ultimately more and more fluid will come to the tissue space. Protein molecules will attract electrolytes along with water.

Cause - Inflammatory edema: it may be-
a) Local cause - Injury to the blood vessels by urns chemicals and infection will produce edema.
b) Systemic cause - Bacterial toxins and some chemicals associated with anoxia will produce congestive cardiac failure and cause edema.

B) Lowering of Colloidal Osmotic Pressure - If there is a lowering of plasma proteins below 4gm%, there will be a lowering of colloidal osmotic pressure and the binding force of protein will be less, as a result, a sufficient amount of fluid will escape out of the vessels to the tissue.

Cause - 

a) Edema of Malnutrition - It is due to hypoproteinaemia.
b) Edema due to Renal disease - 
  • Acute glomerulonephritis
  • Sub-acute glomerulonephritis
  • Nephrotic syndrome
  • Severe anemia may due to chronic blood loss, hookworm infection, etc.

C) Increased capillary hydrostatic pressure.

2) Secondary factors -

A) Increased tissue osmotic pressure
B) Sodium chloride retention
C) Effects of hormone - Anti-diuretic (ADH) of posterior pituitary and aldosterone of the adrenal cortex have some role in the formation of edema.
D) Nervous control - Hupothalamus has some role in water balance. So, if there is any derangement of hypothalamic function, edema may be produced.

Formation of Solid edema - (Expert Homeopathy: Dr. Anutosh Chakraborty)

Solid edema forms due to lymphatic obstruction. It is due to the retention of protein in the tissue space. The tissue will be pale, swollen, and inelastic but tough. There will e overgrowth of connective tissue and thickening of the skin(Elephantiasis).

Causes -

Lymphatic obstruction due to filariasis

Congenital diseases like Milroy's disease

Fibrosis following infection or irradiation

Streptococcal infection of lymph glands

Tuberculosis of lymph glands

Removal of lymph glands

Malignant disease like Carcinoma breast where carcinoma cell will block the lymph passage.

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