Peripheral Artery Disease
One of the most common conditions the vascular lab diagnoses is Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). This illness is a narrowing of vessels that carry blood to the legs, arms, stomach or kidneys. It may be caused by defects in the blood vessels' structure. More commonly it is caused by fatty deposits that block normal blood flow, similar to coronary artery disease and carotid artery disease that affect the heart and brain.
PAD patients may feel cramping or fatigue in the legs and buttocks during activity. The cramping, or "intermittent claudication," goes away when the person stands still. People with PAD often also have fatty buildup in the arteries of the heart and brain. It is very important that these patients are diagnosed, as they have a higher risk of heart attack and stroke.
The vascular lab uses ultrasound and blood pressure cuffs to evaluate veins and arteries in the arms and legs. Venous Duplex is a test on the veins that carry blood from the arms and legs to the heart. Arterial Pressures and Waveforms tests evaluate the arteries that supply the arms and legs with blood.
The lab can also detect carotid artery disease, a restriction of the blood vessels in the neck that feed the brain with blood.
Abdominal Vascular Duplex uses ultrasound to check the blood vessels that go to and from your abdominal organs. This test can help detect an abdominal aortic aneurysm, a life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention.
For more information on vascular testing, or to schedule an appointment with a DMC Sinai-Grace vascular specialist, call 1-888-DMC-2500 or click here.