Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD)

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Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a narrowing of the peripheral arteries, most commonly in the arteries of the legs.

Quick Facts

  • 8-12 million Americans are living with PAD
  • PAD affects 1 in 8 Americans over the age of 60
  • PAD contributes to 10-30% of all lower extremity ulcers
  • People 65+ are 2-3x more likely to undergo amputation
  • Advanced PAD results in delayed wound healing and greater risk for limb loss
  • PAD develops when the arteries that supply oxygen rich blood to organs, arms, and legs become completely or partially blocked as a result of plaque build-up.

The Symptoms of PAD

40% of those with PAD experience no symptoms or leg pain.

  • A pale or bluish skin color
  • Weak or absent pulses in the legs or feet
  • Shiny skin, with loss of hair on legs
  • Sores or wounds on the toes, feet or legs that won’t heal

Next Steps

Timely detection and treatment of any wound can reduce risk of amputation and improve quality of life.

If you have a non-healing wound, reach out to the Wound Care Center® for an appointment.

References
1. Khan, Tahir, et al. “Critical Review of the Ankle Brachial Index.” Current Cardiology Reviews, vol. 4, no. 2, 2008, pp. 101–106., doi:10.2174/157340308784245810.; 2. Spentzouris, Georgios, and Nicos Labropoulos. “The Evaluation of Lower-Extremity Ulcers.” Seminars in Interventional Radiology, vol. 26, no. 04, 2009, pp. 286–295., doi:10.1055/s-0029-1242204.; 3. Boyko, Edward J, et al. “CHAPTER 20 PERIPHERAL ARTERIAL DISEASE, FOOT ULCERS, LOWER EXTREMITY AMPUTATIONS, AND DIABETES.” Diabetes in America, 3rd Edition | NIDDK, 3rd ed., National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Bethesda, MD, 20116, pp. 20–1-20–34.; 3.1; National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2017 Estimates of Diabetes and Its Burden in the United States, www.diabetes.org; 4. “Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 June 2016, www.cdc.gov/DHDSP/data_statistics/fact_sheets/fs_PAD.htm; 5. Armstrong, David G., et al. “Diabetic Foot Ulcers and Vascular Insufficiency: Our Population Has Changed, but Our Methods Have Not.” Journal