When calcium or fatty deposits known as “Plaque” become deposited in your arteries, a condition occurs called “atherosclerosis”. Atherosclerosis may advance to the point where blood flow is reduced to parts of your body (other than your heart or brain) it is known as Peripheral Artery Disease (Or Stenosis).

Risk Factors

  • Smoking or using tobacco products
  • Genetics, family history of stroke, PAD, or heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Older Age (Usually occurs in adults over 50 years of age)


  • Leg numbness
  • Leg pain, or cramping while walking or at rest
  • Skin may appear “shiny”
  • Weakened pulse in legs or feet
  • Darkening of skin
  • Slower growth of hair (on legs) and toenails


  • Doppler Ultrasound can assist with measuring blood flow
  • Angiography – Using contrast (dye) in your vessels to view the flow of blood
  • Ankle-Brachial Index (ABI) – A Common method to compare the blood pressure in your ankle to that in your arm


  • Lifestyle changes such as:
    • Smoking cessation
    • Reducing fat from your diet
    • Exercise
  • Medications to control pain, blood pressure, and blood clots
  • Angioplasty – a small tube (called a catheter) is inserted into an artery, and then inflated to widen the artery and increase blood flow

Would you like more information on Peripheral Artery Disease?  Visit the Society for Vascular Surgery’s Patient Resources Section here.