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  1. #1
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    Swollen Feet and Ankles

    Help!

    Does anyone have a cure/suggestions on dealing with swollen feet and ankles when cruising.
    For the past 10 years I have suffered dreadfully with very swollen feet ankles and even the bottom of my legs. I had always assumed it was down to a mixture of cabin air pressure from flying and the heat when abroad. I have to take several pairs of shoes a size larger than I normally wear with me on holiday.

    But after a four night cruise from Southampton recently with no flights and certainly not hot weather, I still encountered the same problem after only two nights on board ship and this continued getting worse the following few days after returning home.

    So it must be a 'Ship' problem. Any ideas as to what may be the route cause and any solutions?


  2. #2
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    Hi Bradbury,

    Don't take this the wrong way! But do you sit around more on a cruise than you would at home? My Mum used to suffer dreadfully & it was sitting that did it!

    Just a thought.

    Lizzie.


  3. #3
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    This is the answer to the same question asked by someone in The Telegraphs lifestyle section (Why do my feet and ankles swell when I'm on a ship's cruise? - Telegraph):

    You don't tell me your age, or if you are taking any medication. But my research has potentially thrown up some information that might give you a clue to why your feet and ankles swell up when you on these cruise ships.
    But, first, it is worth examining the causes of swollen feet and ankles, or oedema, as it is known in the medical profession.
    There are several causes of fluid retention in the extremities. Most commonly, oedema in the feet and ankles is connected to gravity, and as we get older the veins and blood vessels that carry our blood back to up our legs towards the heart, find it harder to deliver the fluid.
    The blood and body fluids become pooled and the skin starts to swell. This kind of oedema is reversible, and resting, lying down, allows the blood vessels and veins to empty and return to normal.
    Some people suffer from a more serious kind of oedema, which isn't reversible, and is called pitted oedema or chronic oedema.
    This kind of oedema doesn't respond much to elevating the limbs, and sufferers use water tablets and compression stocking to reduce their symptoms.
    While researching the reasons why you only suffer from oedema on board cruise ships, I discovered that a number of people have experienced similar symptoms. The common denominator was that chefs on board the cruise ships were using large amounts of salt in their cooking, together with the fact that travellers tend to eat more on a cruise. Sea air contains much higher levels of salt, which adds to the problem.
    Too much salt in one's diet causes fluid retention, and this could be why your feet and ankles return to normal when you return home.
    Some people also have reported swollen fingers, and I myself have experienced the same, when travelling abroad, and with my index fingers becoming swollen and a bit uncomfortable.
    So, if you go on another cruise, speak to a chef on board and try to arrange for him to cook up some salt-reduced foods.
    Also, your GP can prescribe some water tablets to take if the fluid becomes a problem.
    The only way to find out if this theory is correct is to book another cruise holiday and try to maintain a low-salt diet whilst on board. You should also drink plenty of water and get plenty of exercise.

    It may help
    Shelley

    We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.

  4. #4
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    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Hi Bradbury,

    Don't take this the wrong way! But do you sit around more on a cruise than you would at home? My Mum used to suffer dreadfully & it was sitting that did it!

    Just a thought.

    Lizzie.
    Far from it. I'm always up and down doing something. But the thing is the Doctor has advised me when this happens to keep my legs raised as much as possible.


  5. #5
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    Thanks for the detailed reply Shell.

    I did wonder if it was to do with salt. I dont add salt to any of my food but did wonder if it was in the de-salinated water. Because of the swelling I do drink loads of water and was wondering if perhaps I should try sticking to pure bottled water. I know the ships own water is very pure but after all it has come from the sea and must still contain salt? Unless anyone knows any different.....


  6. #6
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    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Thanks for the detailed reply Shell.

    I did wonder if it was to do with salt. I dont add salt to any of my food but did wonder if it was in the de-salinated water. Because of the swelling I do drink loads of water and was wondering if perhaps I should try sticking to pure bottled water. I know the ships own water is very pure but after all it has come from the sea and must still contain salt? Unless anyone knows any different.....
    Very possibly, If they are using alot of prepackaged ingredients large catering operations can also be known to add MSG to "enhance" the flavour which may also be adding to the problem

    Shelley

    We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.

  7. #7
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    Quote QUOTE: View Post
    Thanks for the detailed reply Shell.

    I did wonder if it was to do with salt. I dont add salt to any of my food but did wonder if it was in the de-salinated water. Because of the swelling I do drink loads of water and was wondering if perhaps I should try sticking to pure bottled water. I know the ships own water is very pure but after all it has come from the sea and must still contain salt? Unless anyone knows any different.....

    Have a look at this www.historyofwaterfilters.com/reverse-osmosis-pc.html then make your own mind up

    Then look at www.rwo.de/en/products_and_Solutions/Potable_Water_Treatment/

    scroll down to

    Mineralisation and De-Acidification

    This may be the source of the salt :o

    Your local forum head of heads :D

    Invoice is in the post + 15% gratuities ;)


  8. #8
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    This is a common problem with cruisers, it was discussed at some length on the P&O site, and it was surprising how many people admitted to suffering from it.
    My wife suffers very badly from it, and they start to swell up within an hour of being on board, even before we have left port, aswell as puffing up they go very hard. On the recent Azura Naming Ceremony in which the ship never left port she suffered badly again, they puffed right up even before we went for the meal. She had to go back to the cabin immediately after the meal and change shoes as she was in agony. It certainly was not for the lack of exercise as we had been on the move most of the day.
    Even the medical dept on board cannot give you a definite answer. She has been told to sleep with the life jacket under the end of the bed to raise her legs up. Before our last cruise on spirit she was advised by somebody on the P&O site only to drink bottled water, this she did and they were not so bad, but they still came up.
    Worse she had other than the Azura naming ceremony, was when we were on Ventura to the med, we had a full 11 hour day trip to Rome, they were bad before we left, but with all the walking, they really puffed up, and went really red with all th blood cells coming to the surface.
    If anybody has a cure she would love to know, as she would rather not cruise than go through the agony. By the way when we were on Spirit we flew from Stanstead to Cypress, that did not cause a problem.


  9. #9
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    I have never suffered with swollen feet until my last cruise and I have been cruising for 20 years.

    I am not doing anything any different so IMO it has to be something to do with the ship, exactly what I have no idea !!!

    Jo

  10. #10
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    I wonder if it would have anything to do with vibration through the deck plates?

    We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.

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