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Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD), more commonly known as hardening of the arteries, affects about eight million Americans. It is a condition in which the large and medium-sized arteries supplying blood to the legs become narrow or clogged, constricting the flow of blood. PAD is caused by atherosclerosis, a gradual process in which cholesterol and scar tissue build up, forming a substance called plaque that clogs the artery. PAD not only causes pain and disability, it also is associated with a much higher risk of heart disease.

Screening for PAD

  • Peripheral Arterial Disease Screening
    • A quick, easy and non-invasive procedure, PAD screening is done by using the ankle-brachial index (ABI). After removing your socks and shoes, you will have pressure cuffs placed around your upper arms and ankles. A small ultrasound device will then measure the systolic blood pressure in your limbs. 

  • Complete Lipid Panel Screening (High Cholesterol)
    • A simple finger-stick screening, this procedure measures three different kinds of lipids in your blood (HDL, LDL and triglycerides) as well as total cholesterol. Your lipid levels are important in determining your PAD risk. Learn More

Who should have a peripheral arterial disease screening?

  • Anyone with risk factors

How often should I get a peripheral arterial disease screening?

  • Annually

*Recommended guidelines only. Consult with your physician.

How do I prepare for a peripheral arterial disease screening?

  • Wear a short-sleeve shirt or blouse
  • Do not wear pantyhose

Warning signs

Even though not everybody with PAD experiences symptoms, these warning signs may indicate arterial issues:

  • Pain during exercise, which is relieved during rest
  • Cold legs
  • Poor wound healing
  • Constant leg pain, tingling, burning or loss of sensation

Risk factors

  • Family history
  • Increasing age
  • Smoking
  • High cholesterol
  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Poor diet
  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Physical inactivity
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