Four foot problems that can severely affect health

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Have you ever used the phrase “My feet are killing me?”

There may be something to it. Our feet bear the weight of our whole bodies.

They contain 25 percent of the body’s bones, 33 joints and 100 tendons, muscles and ligaments. They also contain countless nerves and blood vessels that link to your heart, spine and brain.

Problems with the feet can indicate a more serious condition in another part of your body.

Here are four of the issues that may mean you should go see a doctor:

  • Foot cramps — Also known as muscle cramps and Charley horses, they can be a sign of dehydration, or circulatory problems. They can also happen if you do not stretch before exercising. The right type of shoes can help ease issues.
  • Cold feet — That could mean you have poor circulation. If your feet change color from red to white to blue, it is a sign of Raynaud’s disease, where your blood vessels narrow in response to the cold. 20 percent of these cases stem from diseases in the connective tissue, which can be serious.
  • If your feet look like balloons, you may have a wide range of problems. Several of which can be life-threatening. Possibilities include heart failure, kidney or liver failure, a blood clot or deep vein thrombosis. Redness and warmth with swelling signals an infection.
  • Finally, that pins and needles sensation you may experience could be a sign of damage to the nervous system. The numbness or tingling could possibly come from a trapped nerve, or even disease. People with diabetes experience tingling feet with long exposure to high blood glucose. It is also one of the first signs of multiple sclerosis.

So, if your feet are killing you, you may want to make sure they’re not literally doing so by seeing a doctor. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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