Vascular disease can be attributed to a number of risk factors.Few people realize that blockages caused by a buildup of plaque and cholesterol affect more than coronary arteries. Arteries throughout the body carry oxygen-rich blood away from the heart, so blockages can occur in all arteries with serious effectsthese blockages can be caused by high sodium and fatty diets. Other causes can include blood vessel inflammation, injury to limbs, as well as smoking and lack of exercise.
There are many different symptoms that can signal various vascular diseases or conditions. Most conditions are associated with:
- Skin discoloration
- Decreased or absent pulse
- Leg pain and discomfort, especially during exercise
- Pain when lying down
- Tissue infection, ulceration or loss due to poor blood flow
- Pain and swelling of extremities
- Non-healing wounds
- Large, protruding veins
One of the most important cases we deal with:
Peripheral arterial disease
Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) happens when buildup on the walls of blood vessels causes them to narrow. Doctors most often diagnose PAD when it’s causing leg or foot problems.
Since buildup and narrowing of the arteries occur in all arteries in the body, people with PAD are at high risk of heart attack and stroke.
Possible signs of PAD include:
- Pain in your calves when you’re walking or exercising that goes away with rest.
- Numbness, tingling, or a feeling of pins and needles in your lower legs or feet.
- Cuts or sores on your legs or feet that don’t heal or heal slowly.
In most cases, you can manage PAD through a combination of medication and lifestyle changes. This can reduce your symptoms and lower your chances of having a heart attack or stroke.
- Quit smoking if you smoke.
- Eat a well-balanced diet to help manage your blood glucose levels and weight.
- Lower the cholesterol, saturated fat, and sodium in your diet to lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
- Follow a moderate and supervised exercise program, in which you rest when you feel pain in your legs.
- Monitor your blood pressure and take medication for it as prescribed.
In serious cases of PAD, your doctor may recommend surgery. Your surgeon can use balloon angioplasty or arterial bypass to help open or reroute restricted blood vessels.
It is a type of peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Leriche syndrome refers to a buildup of plaque in your iliac arteries. The aorta, the largest blood vessel in your body, branches off around your belly button area into the two iliac arteries. The iliac arteries run through your pelvis and down your legs.
As plaque starts to narrow your iliac arteries, blood flow to your legs may decrease. This can result in a lack of oxygen in your legs, which may cause pain. Over time, you may start noticing other symptoms of Leriche syndrome, including:
- Extreme pain in the legs or buttocks, even when resting.
- Numbness in your legs and feet.
- Sores on your legs or feet that don’t heal.
- Leg muscle weakness.
How is it diagnosed?
To diagnose Leriche syndrome, your doctor will start with a physical exam. They’ll likely check the pulse points in your legs to evaluate your circulation.
Your doctor may recommend a diagnostic test called the ankle-brachial index (ABI). This involves measuring the blood pressure in your ankle and comparing it to blood pressure in your arm. This can give your doctor a better picture of the circulation of blood in your legs.
Imaging tests, such as a Doppler ultrasound, can also give your doctor a better look at your blood vessels and show any blockages.
How is it treated?
Leriche syndrome is usually treated with lifestyle changes, such as:
- quitting smoking
- managing high blood pressure
- lowering cholesterol
- managing diabetes, if necessary
- getting regular exercise
- eating a low-fat, high-fiber diet
Your doctor may also prescribe an anticoagulant medication,
More advanced cases of Leriche syndrome may need surgical treatment. Common surgeries for treating Leriche syndrome include:
- Angioplasty: A catheter, with a balloon on the end of it is placed in your blocked artery. The balloon is inflated to press the plaque against the wall of your artery, which helps to open it up. Your doctor may also place a stent to keep the area open as well.