Peripheral Artery Disease Specialists

Precision Vascular -  - Vascular & Vein Center

Precision Vascular

Vascular & Vein Centers located in Arlington, Dallas, Mesquite, & McKinney, Texas

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a condition affecting the blood circulation in your legs. It can lead to severe complications — including amputation — if left untreated. If you have symptoms of PAD or any other leg problems, the experts at Precision Vascular can help. They have considerable experience of diagnosing and treating PAD at their branches in Arlington, Dallas, Mesquite, & McKinney, Texas, so if you love your legs, call the practice nearest you today or book an appointment online.

Peripheral Artery Disease Q & A

What is Peripheral Artery Disease?

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a condition that affects the arteries supplying blood from your heart to the farthest parts of your body, particularly your legs. These arteries sometimes start to narrow or get blocked because of a buildup of fatty deposits called plaque. 

The plaque sticks to the artery walls, hardening them and reducing the flow of blood. This is the same problem that causes heart disease, although in that case it’s usually known as atherosclerosis.

What Causes PAD?

The plaque that causes PAD can build up for a number of reasons, including:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • High blood cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity
  • Having cardiovascular disease

 

You’re also more likely to develop PAD if there’s a history of atherosclerosis in your family.

What are the Symptoms of PAD?

In many cases, PAD doesn’t cause any apparent symptoms, meaning people don’t know they have the condition until they develop complications.

When you do start to experience symptoms, the first is likely to be claudication, which causes pain and cramps in the hips, thighs, or calves when you walk or climb up stairs. Other symptoms of PAD that affect your legs might include:

  • Numbness or weakness
  • Coldness in your lower limb
  • Sores that don't heal
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower hair growth or hair loss
  • Slow toenail growth
  • Shiny skin
  • Erectile dysfunction

 

Left untreated, the plaque can form clots that block blood flow altogether. This stage of the disease causes critical limb ischemia (CLI), where you have leg pain that’s severe enough to wake you up at night. 

If this happens, you need urgent medical attention to restore the blood supply to your leg, otherwise, you might develop gangrene. Gangrene is dead tissue that must be removed quickly, or you could lose your leg.

How is PAD Treated?

Your provider at Precision Vascular can help you make lifestyle changes to improve your vein health and might recommend you take medication for PAD. Your treatment program could include:

  • Smoking cessation
  • Healthy diet
  • Supervised walking program
  • Reduce bodyweight
  • Medications to widen blood vessels
  • Blood-thinning medicines

 

It’s essential that any underlying health problems such as high blood pressure or diabetes also receive treatment.

If these conservative treatment measures aren’t improving your PAD, you might need to undergo surgery. The team at Precision Vascular specializes in minimally invasive procedures for vein conditions, including:

  • Balloon Angioplasty with stenting: Your provider inserts a thin tube called a catheter into a tiny incision in your leg and feeds it through to the affected artery. Once it’s in position, your provider inflates a medical balloon that squeezes against the walls of the artery, widening the space. When the balloon comes out, a small mesh tube called a stent goes into the newly widened artery to keep it open.
  • Atherectomy: This is the surgical removal of plaque from your peripheral arteries. Your provider at Precision Vascular uses a catheter again, this time one that has a blade or a laser on the end. When the catheter reaches the blocked artery, your provider can scrape, cut, or laser the plaque away to restore blood flow.

 

If you’re concerned about pain in your legs, find out what’s causing it and receive the best available treatments by calling Precision Vascular today, or book your appointment using the online tool.