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Vascular Conditions:

Peripheral Vascular Disease

Peripheral vascular disease (PVD), also known as peripheral arterial disease (PAD), refers to a number of diseases that affect the blood vessels outside the lungs and heart. The legs and feet are the most commonly affected areas. When the arteries in your legs become blocked, your legs do not receive enough blood or oxygen and you may have a condition called leg artery disease.


    The most common symptom is intermittent claudication (IC). IC is discomfort or pain in your legs that happens when you walk and goes away when you rest. You may not always feel pain; instead you may feel a tightness, heaviness, cramping, or weakness in your leg. IC often occurs more quickly if you walk uphill or up a flight of stairs. Critical limb ischemia is a symptom that you may experience if you have advanced leg artery disease. This occurs when your legs do not get enough oxygen when you are resting. In severe leg artery disease, you may develop painful sores on your toes or feet.


    Bypass Surgery - creates a detour around a narrowed, or blocked, section of a leg artery. To create this bypass, your vascular surgeon uses one of your veins or a tube made from man-made materials. Your vascular surgeon attaches the bypass above and below the area that is blocked. This creates a new path for your blood to flow to your leg tissues.
    Endarterectomy -an endarterectomy is a way for your surgeon to remove the plaque from your artery. To perform an endarterectomy, your vascular surgeon makes an incision in your leg and removes the plaque contained in the inner lining of the diseased artery. This leaves a wide-open artery and restores blood flow through your leg artery.

    Angioplasty and Stenting -in some advanced cases of leg artery disease, your physician may recommend angioplasty and stenting. This procedure is not as invasive as surgery. In an angioplasty, your physician inserts a long, thin, flexible tube called a catheter into a small puncture over an artery in your arm or groin. The catheter is guided through your arteries to the blocked area. Once in place, a special balloon, which is attached to the catheter, is inflated and deflated several times. The balloon pushes the plaque in your artery against your artery walls, widening the vessel. Your vascular surgeon may then place a tiny mesh-metal tube, called a stent, into the narrowed area of your artery to keep it open. The stent remains permanently in your artery. After this procedure, blood flows more freely through your artery.

    Amputation -in extreme cases, especially if your leg has gangrene, your surgeon may recommend amputating your lower leg or foot. Amputation is a treatment of last resort. Vascular surgeons usually only perform it when the circulation in your leg is severely reduced and cannot be improved by the methods discussed already.

    Call 732-249-0360 for an appointment.