Peripheral arterial disease is a chronic disease of the arteries in the legs. PAD occurs over time by way of fatty deposits in your arteries known as atherosclerosis which can narrow the vessels over time. As this occurs you can experience a mismatch of supply and demand between oxygen delivery and the demand of your tissues. This may cause pain with walking known as claudication. If the disease should progress for a variety of reasons and risk factors, you may develop pain all the time or wounds that don’t heal (chronic limb threatening ischemia or CLTI). CLTI patients are at risk for amputation or even death from the effects of vascular disease.
How common is
PAD is relatively common and affects more than 10 million people in the US.
Smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, kidney failure, obesity.
What symptoms may I experience
if I have PAD?
Many people with disease may not experience symptoms at all. Cramping in the calves, thighs or buttocks may indicate underlying PAD. These symptoms are generally exacerbated with walking and abate with rest.
If you have pain all the time in your feet you may have a more severe form of PAD.
You may have wounds, ulcers or sores that don’t heal which can indicate poor oxygenation and healing capacity. This is a severe form of PAD that requires immediate attention from a vascular surgeon.
If it’s determined that I have PAD
what happens next?
Typically, your referring doctor or surgeon will order some tests which may include an ankle-brachial index (ABI) which compares the blood pressure in your arms and legs. Your surgeon may then order more testing or discuss treatments.
What are the
The foundation of PAD treatment is aggressive management of your risk factors, medical conditions and making lifestyle changes. Smoking cessation, blood pressure and cholesterol management is vitally important.
Surgical options may include minimally invasive approaches such as angiogram with balloon angioplasty and stenting or surgical bypass. At OC Surgeons, we are well equipped with the knowledge and expertise for ALL surgical and interventional options.
We are partnered with our community foot and ankle specialists, wound care specialists, and medical experts to provide the best care to achieve the greatest chance of success.
Please call to schedule a consultation with a vascular specialist to discuss PAD and how we may help you.