The most frequent symptom of PAD may be claudication, or leg pain while walking. It can also occur in the arms and as cramping, instead of an ache or sharp pain. Caused by narrow or clogged arteries, the location of the pain depends on the location of the affected artery. Claudication symptoms occur during activity that uses the affected extremity, such as the calf during walks. The pain usually fades quickly with rest. Pain ranges from mild to severe, with extreme cases of claudication interfering with the sufferer’s ability to function or perform physical activity.
Yes, there are several additional symptoms. These may occur with or without claudication, and include:
When PAD advances, pain and other symptoms may happen even when the patient rests, making sleep difficult.
With early detection, the symptoms of PAD can be eased and even reversed. Treatment focuses on symptom reduction and halting the progression of the condition, but it’s not uncommon for improvements to occur. Increased physical activity helps, although this may be difficult if it triggers PAD pain. Dr. Meshkov may recommend a treatment program including supervised exercise, gradually building in intensity. Low-fat, low-cholesterol diet changes also contribute to reduced symptoms and cholesterol reducing drugs may be prescribed. Smoking is an extreme risk factor for PAD and other cardiac conditions. Quitting smoking continues to be a major factor in improving overall health. Treatment for severe cases of PAD include angioplasty and stent placement or even surgery in extreme cases.
At Abington Cardiology, we accept most major insurance plans. Here is a list of some of the plans we accept. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed.