When plaque, which is made of excessive fat, cholesterol and other substances floating through the bloodstream gradually builds up in the arterial walls, the arteries get narrowed and blocked. The condition called ‘atherosclerosis’ can lead to a circulatory problem, as the condition reduces the blood flow to the limbs and occasionally to the arms. Malnourished tissues and organs can gradually lead to a condition called peripheral artery disease (PAD).
You may not experience any symptoms until your arteries are narrowed by more than 60%. This may delay the treatment and reduce your chances of a speedy recovery. Hence it is important that you are aware of the changes that you may notice as the disease progresses.
Symptoms of PAD
Intense pain that persists even while your body is at rest or while lying down can be a warning sign of a progressive PAD. Several signs and symptoms occur which may include:
- Leg pain or muscle cramps that occur when walking
- Cramping in either of both hips, thighs, and calf muscles even after mild walking
- Shiny skin with slower hair growth on feet and legs
- Sores or ulcers on your feet that do not heal
- Skin discoloration or coldness in your legs or feet
- Weakness or numbness in legs
Do you experience recurring leg pain while you exercise? Probably, you relate the pain as a sign of getting older. However, it is quite unlikely that a healthy person would experience such pain without a cause. It is important to see your doctor to rule out the chances of any underlying problems related either to circulation of blood or others.
Your doctor can diagnose PAD with a physical examination. Ankle brachial pressure index (ABPI), is a simple test widely adopted for confirmation of a clinical diagnosis of peripheral arterial disease. A fall in blood pressure in an artery at the ankle relative to the central blood pressure would suggest a narrowing of the arteries, which is indicative of PAD.
Is treatment necessary for PAD?
A permanent cure for PAD rarely exists. However, treatment is essential as the condition is indicative of unhealthy blood vessels and circulation.
The treatment will focus on reducing the symptoms of the condition through medications and lifestyle changes.
If your symptoms do not subside after treatment or if you are critically ill, surgery is recommended. If left untreated, PAD increases the risk of developing various cardiovascular diseases like stroke, heart attack or coronary heart disease.
Minimally invasive treatment alternatives
Angioplasty, is a procedure to widen the artery where there is a blockage thereby allowing more blood to flow through. Atherectomy is another minimally invasive procedure to remove the plaque deposits from the blood vessels.
For a treatment to provide long term benefits it is also important that you follow a healthy lifestyle.
If you are a smoker, quitting improves the chances that the treatment will work.
Physical Activity & Diet
Regular physical activity is an effective treatment for PAD symptoms. Through simple exercise regimens and treadmill exercise programs, symptoms reduce, and the condition improves.
High cholesterol is common among patients with PAD. Medications along with a healthy diet can help lower the blood cholesterol levels.
To know more about the condition and its treatment, call our experts at Avis Vascular Centre.
Peripheral Artery Disease Treatment In Hyderabad
For Appointments Call: 9989527715