If you have PAD, you’re at greater risk of a heart attack or stroke.
The importance of PAD treatment.
The dangers of Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) extend well beyond difficulties in walking, and the consequences can be far worse than limiting your daily activities or missing out on your favorite sports. If left untreated, patients with Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) can develop serious health problems. The National Institutes of Health estimates that a person with PAD has a six to seven times higher risk of coronary artery disease, heart attack, stroke or a transient ischemic attack than the general population.
What is PAD?
Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD) is atherosclerosis that develops in the arteries of the legs or, less commonly, the arms. PAD is caused by the accumulation of fatty plaque in the blood vessel walls. As plaque builds up, the blood vessels get narrower and narrower, until they become blocked. It’s important to note that PAD can build up over a lifetime, and the symptoms may not become obvious until later in life. For many people, the outward symptoms will not appear until the artery has narrowed by 60 percent or more.
The first noticeable symptom of PAD may be intermittent claudication, which is leg discomfort, pain or cramping that develops with activity, is relieved with rest, and recurs upon resuming activity.
The classic symptom of PAD is pain in the legs with physical activity, such as walking, that gets better after rest. Symptoms of pain, aches, or cramps with walking can happen in the buttock, hip, thigh, or calf. However, some patients with PAD, up to 4 in 10 experience no leg pain.
Treatments can vary
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with PAD, treatments can be varied depending on the severity. Treatment of severe leg pain due to peripheral artery disease (PAD) may include a referral to perform an arterial vascular intervention.
It’s important to know the symptoms of PAD. The first noticeable symptom of PAD may be intermittent claudication, which is leg discomfort, pain or cramping that develops with activity, is relieved with rest, and recurs upon resuming activity. The pain is often noticed in the calf, but may also be felt in the buttocks or thighs. Intermittent claudication symptoms may also include numbness, weakness, heaviness or fatigue in the leg muscles when walking that are relieved at rest. The pain can be severe enough to interfere with normal walking.
To treat PAD, MTV IR specialists first perform a diagnostic angiogram to get a closer look at the arteries. This procedure may involve placing a catheter into the artery at the groin or wrist, and then injecting a special dye and analyzing the results via X-ray. Once the problem areas have been identified, MTV IR doctors work with the referring physicians to develop a treatment plan. Treatment often continues with a therapeutic angiogram, which may involve a number of different Interventional Radiology procedures such as angioplasty (expanding the narrowed artery by inflating a tiny balloon) or placing a stent to hold the artery open. Other procedures include drug-coated balloon angioplasty, drug-coated stent placement, or atherectomy (to remove plaque buildup that has become calcified and does not respond well to angioplasty or medication). Most arterial interventions at MTV IR are performed as outpatient procedures with no overnight hospital stays required.
If you or a loved one has symptoms common with PAD, see your primary care physician. If you have been diagnosed with PAD, it’s important to know your treatment options. The interventional radiologists at MTV IR offer a safe, effective, almost painless treatment for PAD.
To see images of the amazing results MTV IR has achieved in treating PAD, follow this link https://mtvir.com/treatments/vascular-interventions/arterial-vascular-interventions/ and scroll to the bottom section of the page.