Peripheral Vascular Disease
Just as artery blockages can develop in the arteries of the heart, they can also occur in the arteries elsewhere in the body. Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) refers to arteries that develop disease outside of the heart. Typical places this causes problems are in the arteries of the legs, arms, kidneys, and neck, though any artery can be affected.
Those blockages which develop in the arteries of the neck and brain can cause strokes. Those that develop in the legs may cause heaviness, cramping, and/or pain in the leg muscles frequently while walking, and improving with rest. Kidney artery blockages can cause chronic disease of the kidneys (CKD), difficult to control blood pressure and in some instances, may lead to episodes rapid accumulation of fluid on the lungs.
Your doctors at Trident Cardiology Associates are dedicated to diagnosing and managing all types of cardiovascular disease including peripheral arterial disease. Blood pressure measurements in the arms and legs, ultrasound studies, as well as vessel imaging either by CAT scanning or angiography in the catheterization lab (x-ray pictures) may be used to diagnose PAD. This issue may need to be dealt with using medications, balloon/stenting of the arteries (angioplasty), or possibly surgery.