“Hardening of the arteries” isn’t just bad for your heart. It can affect your feet and legs, too.
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is the stiffening or narrowing of blood vessels that supply oxygen to the limbs. It can reduce the blood flow to your legs, leading to problems with walking, slow wound healing, and chronic leg discomfort.
Find a cardiologist at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican who specializes in treating vascular conditions, such as peripheral artery disease, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV. Call (702) 616-4900 to set up an appointment today.
Watch for Symptoms of Peripheral Artery Disease in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV
Peripheral artery disease reduces blood flow to your feet and legs. If you have this condition, your lower legs may look bluish in color. This is due to lack of oxygen. Other symptoms include:
- Pain that gets worse when you put your legs up
- Severe pain in the toes, which may cause you to avoid wearing socks or putting your feet under the bed covers
- Fatigue, burning, or pain in your leg muscles, especially while walking
- Leg cramps at night
- Numbness in your feet and legs while resting
- Sores on your legs and feet that do not heal or are from an unknown cause
Am I at Risk for PAD?
Peripheral artery disease is most common in men older than 50, but women can get it, too. Risk factors for developing PAD include:
Try a cardiac nutrition, fitness class, or smoking cessation class at Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican hospitals to keep your heart healthy and lower your risk of PAD. See all of our classes and register online.
Peripheral Artery Disease Treatments
Peripheral artery disease is a chronic condition, which means there is no cure. However, there are a range of treatment options.
To determine the right treatment for you, your doctor will perform a physical exam and may order tests, including:
- Physical examination
- Noninvasive Doppler imaging (ultrasound) of the blood flow in your legs
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
- Laboratory blood testing
If you have peripheral artery disease, you may need to take prescription medications to prevent blood clots. It’s important to get prompt medical attention for any lesions, sores, or cuts on your legs or feet. You will also need to make lifestyle changes such as:
- Eating a low-fat diet
- Quitting smoking
- Taking medication for high blood pressure, if prescribed
- Keeping your blood sugar under control, if you have diabetes
- Exercising according to your doctor’s instructions
If your peripheral artery disease is severe, your doctor may recommend angioplasty to open the blocked blood vessels in your legs. Dignity Health-St. Rose Dominican hospitals can treat symptoms of peripheral artery disease in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.