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5 Things Only People with PAD Can Understand

senior man using tablet to read about his vascular and arterial health

If you are at risk for Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), or you have already been diagnosed, then you probably know how debilitating of a condition it can become. According to the National Department of Health and Human Services, 1 out of every 20 people living in America over the age of 50 has PAD, a preventable circulatory condition that’s a result of plaque buildup in the arteries.

Imagine how difficult it would be to drink soda through a straw if the inside of that straw was coated in chunky peanut butter. You will likely struggle getting the tasty beverage to your mouth with the peanut butter blocking the area of the straw. This is what its like having PAD, as the plaque builds up in the arteries it becomes harder and harder for blood to flow properly.

Five Relatable PAD Symptoms

At USA Vascular Centers, we want you to know that you’re not alone. We understand how difficult it can be to live with the symptoms of PAD which is why we are so dedicated to providing high-class treatment to all patients in need.

Below we’ve put together a list of five things only people with PAD will understand.

1. The Traveling Cramp That Just Won’t Quit

Everything is going great—until you decide to stand up and the cramping begins. Whether its in your buttocks, calves, or thighs, you know that doing anything that requires sitting or standing for a long period is going to bring on the incessant cramping.

2. Reflective Legs

As if the cramping wasn’t enough, the hair on your legs may be thinning and becoming shiny due to your blocked arteries causing your skin to stretch. Your skin stretches when you have pooling of blood or other fluids in the lower extremities. Although some people desire to have effortlessly hairless legs, you’d rather not be prodded with questions like “Why are your legs so shiny?” from curious children. If that wasn’t annoying enough, you’re getting tired of hearing, “Oh, you just need to put more lotion on them,” from everyone thinking they know more about your condition than you do.

3. Getting In or Out of a Car is A Full-Body Workout

Because of the cramping in your buttocks, thighs, or calves, doing anything that requires you to lift your own legs, like getting out or into a car, is physically exhausting. Wanting to just “hop” into the car and take off? No such thing.

4. Stairs Are Pure Evil

If you have PAD, your elevator radar is probably always on high alert, and we can guess that you’re really tired of being told “It’s only one flight!” The constant glares when you decide to take the elevator instead of taking the stairs, just makes it even worse.

5. Chronically Frosty Toes

Among the many responsibilities blood has in the body, one of them is to help regulate temperature. A proper amount of blood can’t travel very far if its roadway is blocked which causes your toes to be little icicles year-round. Feeling the need to put on three pairs of socks before you leave the house? Thanks to PAD, it’s become the new normal.

Treatment for Peripheral Artery Disease

At USA Vascular Centers, we don’t want you to think you have to struggle with the painful and uncomfortable symptoms of PAD forever. Ignoring your symptoms and “sweeping them under the rug” may just lead to more serious health concerns like a heart attack or stroke. In 2019, we are luck to have non-surgical treatment available that can help you take back your independence and your mobility. Contact us at 888.773.2193 if you are interested in learning more about how to start your treatment journey.

Don’t feel like calling? Click here to schedule your appointment online.

We believe that all patients deserve access to our innovative medical treatments regardless of their financial status which is why we accept Medicare, CareCredit, most insurances, and some Medicaid plans. Don’t wait, take the next step to healthier legs today.

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