Health & Wellness

Why PAD is Bad, and What You Can Do About It

Current or past smoker, you maybe at risk for PAD

Unfortunately, peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is not on the minds of many people, and that’s not good. PAD affects more than eight million Americans and it can be treated or lead to a stroke and heart attack.  That’s a lot of ticking time bombs.

PAD occurs when excess cholesterol and other fats circulating in the blood begin to build up in the walls of arteries that supply blood to your limbs. The condition is most often seen in the legs. When arteries narrow and reduce or block blood flow, the risk of heart attack and stroke increases.

Am I at risk?

PAD risk factors overlap with other heart and vascular risk factors. People who have any of the following conditions are more likely to develop PAD:

  • Over the age of 50
  • Current or past smoker
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • History of vascular disease, heart attack or stroke

What are PAD symptoms?

The scary thing about PAD is many people who have it don’t have symptoms. But if you do experience any of the following symptoms, talk with your doctor and be screened for PAD:

  • Fatigue heaviness, tiredness, cramping in the leg muscles (buttocks, thigh or calf) that occurs during activity such as walking or climbing stairs
  • Pain in the legs and/or feet that disturbs sleep
  • Sores or wounds on toes, feet or legs that heal slowly, poorly or not at all
  • Color changes in the skin of the feet, including paleness or blueness
  • Poor nail growth and decreased hair growth on toes and legs

Here’s the good news about PAD: Roper St. Francis Healthcare offers a potentially life-saving screening that can identify PAD, so you can get the proper treatment and help prevent a bad outcome like a heart attack or stroke.

If you have any of the above risk factors and/or experience any of these symptoms, get this simple, non-invasive screening that could save your life.

To find out if you qualify or to schedule your PAD screening, call (855) PAD-7697.

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