Signs You Should Be Tested For Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)
Peripheral Arterial Disease, better known as “poor circulation,” is basically restriction of blood flow through the arteries of the leg. The blood flow is restricted by plaque in the arteries, which narrows them and keeps blood from reaching the legs and feet. It is potentially a very serious disease since restriction of blood flow in the legs may indicate more extensive arterial disease, meaning restriction of blood flow to more vital areas, such as the brain or the heart, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke.
During the first stages of P.A.D., many people have no symptoms at all and by the time symptoms do surface arteries can already be dangerously blocked. Here are a few common symptoms that indicate P.A.D. If you have any of these symptoms, you should see a doctor to discuss them:
- Legs and feet that feel cold
- Changes in color in the legs, feet or toes (look for pale, bluish or discolored toes or feet)
- Cramping or leg pain that occurs while lying down or while walking
- Thigh, buttock, calf, hip, or foot discomfort, which may include pain, cramping, tingling, aching or just fatigue, that occurs while walking, but you can relieve with rest
- Toe or foot pain that disturbs your sleep often
- Numbness or weakness in the legs
- Loss of hair on the legs or feet
- Sores on the legs, toes, or feet that won’t heal or are slow to heal
- Changes in the color and thickness of toenails
Again, if you suffer from these symptoms, you should contact your doctor for an evaluation. Usually, to diagnose P.A.D., the doctor will get your comprehensive medical history and do a lower extremity physical evaluation. This includes evaluating your skin condition, your pulses, and any foot deformities. If you have risk factors for P.A.D., there may be further tests.
For more information or to set up an appointment, you can visit our website at www.neufoot.com or call our office at 615-220-8788.
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