Nagging pain in your leg can affect how you walk around and effectively diminish your day’s productivity. A clogged artery in your leg can be a real problem that may hinder your movement and cause cramps after walking for some distance. This eases up once you stop walking. Peripheral artery disease in Frisco could significantly cause such symptoms. Read on to find out more about the condition.
What is Peripheral Artery Disease?
Peripheral arterial disease is a condition that mainly affects the arteries in which the arteries are narrowed, thereby reducing blood flow to your limbs. This typically affects your legs as not enough blood flows compared to the demand. Pain in the leg during walking is the most common symptom.
Fatty deposits may also accumulate in your arteries resulting in this condition. Eating healthy foods, exercising, and avoiding tobacco use can successfully treat peripheral artery disease.
Signs and Symptoms of Peripheral Artery Disease
Most people with this condition do not experience symptoms. The few that get symptoms involve claudication that includes leg cramp or muscle pain that dissipates after resting for a few minutes. The pain is usually around the area of the affected clogged artery, commonly around the calf.
Claudication may be severe, resulting in extreme pain that might hinder mobility. Some signs and symptoms of peripheral artery disease involve:
- Weakness and numbness in the leg
- The slow growth of toenails
- Men experience erectile dysfunction
- Cramping that is painful in thighs, hips, or calf muscles after physical exercise such as walking
- Sores around your feet and toes that will not heal
- Change in color of your legs
- Cramping and pain when using your arms
- The skin on your legs appears shiny
If the disease progresses, the pain may be too intense even when resting and disrupt sleep.
This disease is commonly caused by accumulating fatty deposits on your artery walls, thereby reducing blood flow. Other causes include radiation exposure, blood vessel inflammation, unusual ligament, and muscle anatomy, or injury to your limbs.
Factors that may result in a higher chance of contracting the disease include:
- High cholesterol
- Family history
- Advancing age
- High levels of homocysteine
Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis is made through a physical exam on the affected limb. Other methods include;
- Blood tests
- Ankle-brachial index test
Treatment of peripheral artery disease is aimed primarily to:
- Manage the symptoms like leg pain
- Inhibit progression of the condition to other parts of the body
Lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking early on can deal with the condition. However, additional medications may be required, such as:
- High blood pressure medications
- Blood clot medications
- Cholesterol-lowering medications
Lack of exercise and unhealthy eating habits contribute to peripheral artery disease. This is something that most people do not take seriously. If you feel any of the symptoms mentioned above, visit your local doctor for consultation. You could also check out our website or call our offices in Frisco, TX.