Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)
Atherosclerosis is the buildup of cholesterol and smooth muscle plaque in the lining of arteries. This process has a genetic basis. It is made worse by factors such as:
- Poorly controlled cholesterol
With peripheral artery disease (PAD), the plaque buildup causes blood flow restriction to legs and other affected organs. With the progression of PAD induced flow restriction, blood flow cannot keep up with a limb’s resting demands for oxygen and nutrients. This causes leg cramps and may lead to non-healing wounds. Arterial blockages are the leading cause of limb amputations. This is due to non-healing leg ulcers/wounds that lead to infection and gangrene. If you have PAD, you are also at higher risk for having heart disease and stroke.
Common Symptoms of PAD include:
- Calf, leg or buttock pain (claudication) while walking
- The pain stops at rest and resumes at a predictable distance
- Leg weakness, burning or aching in feet or toes and gets worse while walking
- Sores or ulcers on toes, feet or legs that do not heal after four weeks of local wound treatment
- Change in color of feet, loss of hair or wasting of muscles in the legs
Dr. Azher Iqbal is an expert in the treatment of peripheral artery disease.
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