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Treating and Managing Peripheral Artery Disease

Monday, 03 August 2020 00:00

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a condition that causes poor circulation to the lower extremities due to a buildup of arterial plaque. Common symptoms include painful leg cramps, especially after walking, and leg and foot numbness and weakness. Having PAD can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke, which makes diagnosing and treating this condition a top priority. For PAD patients, doctors often recommend lifestyle modifications to manage symptoms and reduce the risk of having a stroke or heart attack. These modifications may include quitting smoking, changing your diet to lower your cholesterol, controlling hypertension and diabetes through medications, and exercising. Treatment options for PAD differ based on the severity of the disease. A doctor might recommend an exercise regimen to increase mobility and medications to improve circulation and reduce pain. Consult with a podiatrist to find the treatments and management strategies that are right for you.

Peripheral artery disease can pose a serious risk to your health. It can increase the risk of stroke and heart attack. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, consult with Dr. James Kutchback from James Kutchback, DPM, ABLES, CWS-P. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is when arteries are constricted due to plaque (fatty deposits) build-up. This results in less blood flow to the legs and other extremities. The main cause of PAD is atherosclerosis, in which plaque builds up in the arteries.

Symptoms

Symptoms of PAD include:

  • Claudication (leg pain from walking)
  • Numbness in legs
  • Decrease in growth of leg hair and toenails
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Sores and wounds on legs and feet that won’t heel
  • Coldness in one leg

It is important to note that a majority of individuals never show any symptoms of PAD.

Diagnosis

While PAD occurs in the legs and arteries, Podiatrists can diagnose PAD. Podiatrists utilize a test called an ankle-brachial index (ABI). An ABI test compares blood pressure in your arm to you ankle to see if any abnormality occurs. Ultrasound and imaging devices may also be used.

Treatment

Fortunately, lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, managing cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and quitting smoking, can all treat PAD. Medications that prevent clots from occurring can be prescribed. Finally, in some cases, surgery may be recommended.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our offices located in The Woodlands and Woodville, TX. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Peripheral Artery Disease