Living With PAD: Managing PAD Symptoms and What to Expect

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) can significantly impact your quality of life. If you have PAD, you may have difficulty walking, climbing stairs, and performing everyday activities. This common, yet serious, vascular disease can also place you at increased risk for several dangerous health conditions if untreated.

 If you are living with peripheral artery disease (PAD), we want you to know that you can still experience a full and productive life. At USA Vascular Centers, our vascular specialists are leading experts on the management of peripheral artery disease

Below, we provide information about living with PAD. If you have questions about treatment, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with one of our highly skilled vascular specialists.

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What to Expect From PAD

PAD is a progressive disease, meaning that symptoms get worse over time. The most common symptom is claudication, or muscle pain or weakness that begins with physical activity, such as walking, and stops within minutes after resting. Other potential issues include skin discoloration, leg pain at rest, erectile dysfunction, and arterial ulcers.

We want you to be aware that some individuals may struggle with PAD pain management. Fortunately, treatment can help. It can also reduce your risks of experiencing heart attack, stroke, and limb amputation due to PAD.

Early diagnosis usually leads to the best health outcomes. PAD medical management is key when it comes to improving quality of life and avoiding dangerous complications. After a PAD diagnosis, it is important to follow treatment recommendations from a vascular specialist. If you do so, you have a 75 percent chance that your PAD will not get worse.

At USA Vascular Centers, we work with each patient to develop a personalized PAD treatment plan. 

Life after living with PAD

How Long Can You Live With PAD?

With treatment, many individuals can live full and complete lives with PAD. Even when PAD is advanced, you may be able to regain mobility and improve your quality of life. Signs of advanced PAD include severe claudication, arterial ulcers, and leg pain at rest.

To alleviate PAD symptoms and avoid dangerous health issues, it is important to consult a vascular specialist.

Is PAD Curable?

Although there is no cure for PAD, treatment is available. At USA Vascular Centers, our PAD treatment has three primary goals: 

  • To alleviate symptoms
  • To reduce risks of heart attack, stroke, and limb amputation
  • To improve your quality of life

We encourage you to take control of your vascular health by requesting an appointment with one of our vascular specialists today.

PAD Management Guidelines: How to Manage Peripheral Artery Disease

At USA Vascular Centers, our specialists are available to guide you through living with PAD. Your treatment plan may include one or more of the following recommendations.

Lifestyle Modifications

Your lifestyle decisions can influence the course of your disease. Therefore, we suggest that you:

    • Exercise regularly: Physical activity can promote blood flow to the legs. For greatest effect, your doctor may recommend a supervised treadmill program.
    • Eat a healthy diet: Making better food choices can improve the health of your arteries. Be sure to eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. We also want you to avoid highly processed foods, sodium, added sugars, and saturated fats. 
    • Maintain a healthy Body Mass Index (BMI): Being obese or overweight can place additional strain on your circulatory system. That said, we understand how challenging it can be to lose weight. Consider joining a medical weight loss program for added support. 
    • Quit smoking: Along with impacting the health of your heart and lungs, smoking is harmful to your arteries. If you need help quitting, talk to your doctor about smoking cessation programs.

Medications

Your doctor may prescribe medications to promote better blood circulation. If you are prescribed any, be sure to take them exactly as instructed. You should also let your doctor know about other medications and supplements that you use. 

Medical Procedures

If you are experiencing a severe arterial blockage, we may recommend a medical procedure to restore blood flow to your lower extremities. Our vascular specialists perform a range of minimally invasive, outpatient procedures, including:

Request a Consultation at USA Vascular Centers

We want you to know that you don’t have to suffer while living with PAD. At USA Vascular Centers, we provide specialized PAD treatment in over 40 locations nationwide. For your convenience, we also offer virtual consultations using telemedicine.

Our compassionate doctors care deeply about your quality of life.

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YOU CAN LOWER YOUR RISK FOR PAD

Timely detection and treatment of PAD can improve the quality of your life; help you keep your independence and mobility; and reduce your risk of heart attack, stroke, leg amputation, and even death.

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