Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a common condition that causes leg pain and may trigger the development of arterial ulcers. If you have symptoms of PAD, the experienced team at Cardiac Care Consultants can diagnose your condition at their Peoria, Sun City West, and Wickenburg, Arizona, offices. They also provide advanced treatments to improve your cardiovascular health and prevent serious complications. Find out how you could benefit from their expertise by calling Cardiac Care Consultants today or booking an appointment online.
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a condition that affects the arteries delivering blood from your heart to your body and limbs. If you have PAD, these arteries become narrow or blocked, which reduces the amount of oxygen your tissues receive.
PAD is usually due to atherosclerosis. This condition develops when cholesterol and other debris from your blood gather to form a sticky residue called plaque. The plaque lines your artery walls, making the blood vessels narrower; as the plaque hardens, the arteries get stiff.
Because of this plaque buildup, blood can’t reach your tissues in the quantities required. The lack of oxygen and nutrients can have serious effects on these tissues and lead to problems like arterial ulcers (slow or non-healing wounds), gangrene, and amputation.
Atherosclerosis also affects the arteries in your heart, causing coronary artery disease (CAD), which is the main cause of heart attacks. Atherosclerosis in the carotid arteries in your neck (carotid artery disease) is the primary cause of stroke.
You’re most likely to experience symptoms of peripheral artery disease in your arms and legs, which might include:
A typical symptom of PAD in your legs is claudication – pain that worsens when you walk.
The buildup of plaque that leads to peripheral artery disease is often due to having too much cholesterol in your diet. You’re likely to have high cholesterol levels if you’re overweight or obese, although some slim people also suffer from high cholesterol.
Other risk factors for PAD include:
As part of their high-quality preventive cardiology program, Cardiac Care Consultants identifies your risks and checks for the earliest symptoms of PAD.
Your provider at Cardiac Care Consultants designs a customized treatment plan for you based on your symptoms, the underlying causes of your condition, other health problems you have, and the results of tests that map your blood flow, such as arterial duplex studies, carotid artery ultrasound, and peripheral angiograms.
Treatments may include balloon angioplasty, endarterectomy, and stenting. These procedures use minimally invasive catheterization techniques, which involve passing a tube called a catheter into an artery.
Angioplasty uses a tiny balloon to squash the plaque, while endarterectomy uses specialized tools to break up or scrape off the plaque. A stent is a small mesh tube that stays in your artery to keep it open.
Another treatment you may require to prevent blood clots from forming is anticoagulation management.
Find out whether you have peripheral artery disease and get the treatment you need by calling Cardiac Care Consultants today or booking an appointment online