More than 10 million people in the United States have peripheral artery disease, yet many do not receive a proper diagnosis. Of the 180,000 non-traumatic amputations each year, over half are without proper screening to determine if saving the limb is possible. Hartaj Virk, MD, at North Jersey Vascular Center in Clifton, New Jersey, offer on-site diagnosis and treatment to improve your vascular health and prevent serious complications. North Jersey Vascular Center's renowned physicians perform minimally invasive procedures that restore normal blood flow, so you can enjoy a happier and healthier lifestyle. If you suffer from leg pain or heaviness, schedule a consultation without delay by calling the office.
Peripheral arterial disease develops when plaque builds up in your arteries. While PAD can affect any of your peripheral arteries, it most often develops in your legs.
Plaque begins when cholesterol and other fats accumulate on the vessel wall, causing a condition called atherosclerosis. The plaque gradually enlarges and hardens, narrowing the artery and blocking blood flow.
Atherosclerosis can progressively worsen for years before causing symptoms. Most patients develop symptoms after the artery has significantly narrowed, and then they experience problems such as:
The first symptom of PAD is usually intermittent claudication. This condition causes leg pain, heaviness, and muscle cramping when you walk.
Your legs feel better when you rest, but then the pain returns the next time you start walking. Severe cases of PAD may cause leg pain even when you rest.
Non-healing wounds that go without proper treatment often lead to severe infections that many physicians treat with amputation.
But you have options at North Jersey Vascular Center thanks to the highly skilled interventional and endovascular cardiology team that specializes in complex critical limb interventions that prevent amputation.
Your provider at North Jersey Vascular Center performs a thorough physical exam and orders blood tests to check many biomarkers, including your cholesterol levels.
You may need diagnostic imaging like ultrasound to evaluate blood flow in your legs and to identify narrow or blocked arteries.
Your comprehensive treatment encompasses all aspects of your health. For example, you may need treatment for high blood pressure, diabetes, or other conditions associated with PAD.
Medications that relax your arteries, improve blood flow, and prevent blood clots are the first line of treatment. Depending on the severity of your PAD, you may need minimally-invasive interventional procedures to clear the artery, such as:
Your provider at North Jersey Vascular Center guides a narrow catheter through your blood vessels to the blocked artery. When the catheter is in place, they inflate a balloon, pushing the plaque against the arterial wall and restoring blood flow through the artery. They may also implant a mesh stent to hold the blood vessel open.
When the plaque is too hard to push away with angioplasty, your provider may perform an atherectomy. They guide a catheter to the blockage, but this catheter is specially equipped with either a knife or a laser that removes the plaque.
If you have severe peripheral arterial disease, your provider may reroute blood flow around the blockage by attaching a synthetic tube or a small section of a blood vessel removed from another part of your body.
If you suffer from leg pain or cramping, call North Jersey Vascular Center or schedule an appointment online today for a peripheral arterial disease examination.