Peripheral Artery Disease
Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) occurs when fat and cholesterol builds up inside the walls of your arteries (atherosclerosis). This eventually narrows the opening of the arteries and leads to inadequate blood flow. Depending on where the blockage occurs and how severe it is, symptoms may include chest pain, heart attack, stroke, leg pain or cramps, foot ulcers, gangrene, renal artery disease, hypertension, heart failure, or abnormal kidney function.
Treatment for PAD includes symptom management, such as leg pain relief, and determent of atherosclerosis progression throughout your body to reduce your risk of heart attack and stroke. It is critically important to stop smoking in order to reduce your risk of complications. Other lifestyle changes may be recommended or medications prescribed by your vascular specialist to prevent blood clots, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and control symptoms. In some cases, angioplasty or bypass surgery may be necessary to treat PAD.
Read more about our tips for managing risk factors for PAD in our blog.
Need more information on Peripheral Artery Disease? Visit the Society for Vascular Surgery’s Patient Resources section here.