Peripheral Artery Disease Treatment in Phoenix, Arizona
Peripheral Arterial Disease, or what is commonly known as PAD, is a chronic disease where plaque gradually builds up in the arteries leading to limited blood flow or entirely block the flow of blood also called an occlusion.
This Plaque that builds up in your arteries and veins is a waxy fatty substance caused by high levels of cholesterol and worsened by smoking. The plaque builds up on the arterial or vessel wall as it passes through the vessels along with the blood and can lead to the hardening or atherosclerosis of the arteries and eventual occlusion. Peripheral arterial disease is a very common disease affecting 1 in 20 Americans over the age of 50.
At Western Vascular Institute, our vascular surgeons have years of experiencing in treating a range of arterial diseases including peripheral artery disease. We provide our patients in Phoenix, AZ and surrounding areas with the best diagnosis and treatment for PAD. Our highly skilled team at western vascular make providing the best vein and vascular care to patients possible! For more information, call one of our vein and vascular clinics at (480) 668-5000 to schedule an appointment today!
What are the Symptoms of PAD?
Many people with peripheral artery disease have little to no symptoms, Mayo Clinic listed several PAD symptoms one could have such as:
- Fatigue or cramping of the muscles in the calf, hip, thigh, or buttock muscles.
- Discomfort after walking even with rest.
- Pain in toes while resting, and an open wound on toes or feet.
The symptoms may be present or absent but are due to a lack of blood flow to the muscle group, resulting in pain in the affected muscle groups. However, if the individual has diabetes or neuropathy, they may not feel the pain.
The presence of an extremity ulcer is one of the more obvious clinical signs of poor circulation. Other common symptoms: pain with walking a short distance; pain at rest when legs are elevated, but lessens when legs are dangled over the side of the bed or sofa.
What are the Causes of PAD?
Both men and women are affected by peripheral artery disease, the CDC listed out several risk factors that increase the chances of developing PAD, such as:
- High Cholesterol
- High Blood Pressure
- Genetic factors including heredity
What are the Risk Factors of PAD?
- Age over 50 yrs.
- History of stroke or heart disease.
- History of high cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Little to no exercise
What Are The Warning Signs That You May Have PAD?
- If you have poor circulation, it will typically begin in your legs first
- Pain in the calf muscles when you walk (claudication) is the most common symptom
- Poor wound healing or decline in the pulses in your feet
These symptoms may indicate severe blockages in the vascular system
How Is PAD Diagnosed?
Your vascular surgeon will perform a physical examination and will most likely perform the following tests:
- Ankle Brachial Index or ABI test for a blood pressure comparison of the upper and lower peripheral system.
- Duplex ultrasound and doppler ultrasound will be performed to evaluate the flow of blood through the vessels and identify any occlusions or narrowed areas.
- Angiography- An endovascular procedure where a contrast medium or dye is injected into the blood vessel under x-ray imaging to allow the doctor to see how the blood flows through the arteries and veins and locate blockages in the flow of blood.
How Do You Treat PAD?
Our surgeons at Western Vascular Institute will usually recommend a patient begin medication management and lifestyle changes. These changes include increasing exercise, quitting smoking, controlling blood pressure, controlling diabetes, and controlling cholesterol. In addition to exercise, the patient is encouraged to eat a healthy diet and try to lose weight to decrease the pressure on the peripheral arteries.
Minimally Invasive Surgical Treatment
If conservative management is unsuccessful the surgeons will proceed to more aggressive management of the disease process. Our surgeons will generally suggest performing balloon angioplasty and stent placement if the blockages are not managed by conservative means. An additional tool the surgeons have to remove the blockage and improve blood flow is a laser atherectomy device. This device allows the surgeons to vaporize the plaque blockage inside of the vessel by using a high-energy light (laser).
Hospital-based Surgical Treatment
If minimally invasive treatment is unsuccessful or not recommended, then more invasive such as open and endovascular surgical techniques are used. Surgical bypass is an open surgical procedure where the affected vessel segment is removed and a natural or synthetic graft is placed to reroute the flow of blood. This procedure does not treat the overall disease process, rather it is used as a means of blockage/occlusion removal.
Schedule a Peripheral Artery Disease Consultation in Phoenix, AZ
If you have been experiencing symptoms of peripheral artery disease it is important that you schedule an appointment with one of our highly-trained vascular surgeons. They will diagnose your symptoms and discover the best treatment option for you. For more information about our Vascular Surgery Center in Phoenix, AZ, please call (480) 668-5000 to schedule your appointment today.