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Peripheral Vascular Disease – Healers & Practitioners Community Article By New York Cardiac Diagnostic Center


Arteries are the blood vessels that carry blood from your heart to the rest of your body. If you have peripheral artery disease, you have a disorder that causes a buildup of fatty deposits in your arteries, narrowing them and restricting the blood flow to your legs and abdomen. Eventually, a blood clot forms, and no further blood can flow through that area. Blood clots in other parts of your body that break loose can cause a heart attack or stroke.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that more than eight million Americans have peripheral artery disease or PAD. As many as 12 to 20 percent of those over the age of 60 are affected by this disorder. So leg pain isn’t something to ignore. When you visit our cardiac diagnostic center in Manhattan, make sure to mention even the slightest discomfort in your legs. It’s not a normal part of aging.

The Varied Symptoms of Peripheral Artery Disease
One of the hallmark symptoms of PAD is muscle pain and cramping in your legs while walking that usually disappears when you rest. This is known as claudication. The intensity of the pain can vary from just slightly uncomfortable to so painful that it stops you in your tracks. The location of the pain depends on where the clot has formed. The most common location is in your calf, which is why it hurts when you walk.

Besides leg pain and muscle cramping, other signs of peripheral artery disease include:

  • Numbness or weakness in your legs
  • Coldness in your legs or feet
  • Change in the color of your legs
  • Sores that won’t heal on your feet, legs or toes
  • Weak pulse or even no pulse in your legs or feet
  • Erectile dysfunction in men

Causes and Risk Factors for Blood Vessel Diseases
Blood vessel diseases — including peripheral vascular disease (or PVD), peripheral artery disease and coronary artery disease — are often caused by atherosclerosis. This is a condition in which fatty deposits known as plaque build up in the wall of your blood vessels, reducing the blood flow. While PAD affects the arteries carrying blood away from your heart, coronary artery disease involves the arteries carrying blood to your heart.

All blood vessel diseases also may be caused by an injury to your limbs, blood vessel inflammation or radiation exposure. In addition to your age, other factors that increase your risk of developing a blood vessel disease include:

  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Family history of heart disease or vascular problems

Complications of Blood Vessel Disease
When plaque builds up in your blood vessels, you’re at risk of developing dangerous complications. Fat deposits affecting arteries throughout your body can continue to build up and eventually cause a stroke or heart attack. If you have any risk factors at all, even if you don’t have any PAD or PVD symptoms, it’s best to get regular checkups to prevent the fat buildup.

Open sores may also point to peripheral artery disease or peripheral vascular disease. If your sores don’t heal properly and in due time, it can lead to a condition called critical limb ischemia. If this condition develops from an infected wound, it can lead to tissue death and possibly amputation of the affected limb.

Read more: https://newyorkcardiac.com/peripheral-vascular-disease

New York Cardiac Diagnostic Center
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