Your Weight is a Risk Factor for your Limb: Diabetics & Smokers Beware!

02 February, 2019

Peripheral artery disease (PAD), and questions related to PAD.

What causes PAD disease?
What complications might develop with PAD?
How to preserve vascular health?

PAD is a progressive disease which advances and get worse without timely treatment. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent PAD from advancing to critical limb ischemia (CLI means Severe pain in leg with Non healing Ulcer or wound). Critical limb ischemia is a serious form of PAD that may necessitate amputation of the affected limb. Weight is also a serious risk factor for PAD and critical limb ischemia.

About PAD

PAD is a vascular disorder that affects your limbs. PAD is caused by atherosclerosis (build-up of plaque in the arteries), that supplies blood to the legs. Atherosclerosis blocks blood circulation to the legs and can deprive leg tissues of oxygen and nutrients.

High blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, high cholesterol, and obesity are some of the known risk factors of PAD. PAD treatment involves management of all of these risk factors. If you are not managing all these PAD risk factors, there are high chances that disease may progress more quickly and you may develop Critical Limb Ischemia (Severe pain in leg with Non healing Ulcer or wound).

PAD is not completely curable but if you successfully manage all of the above mentioned PAD risk factors, you may prevent the disease from worsening. You need to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes and lead a happy life.

  • Quit smoke or tobacco, at the earliest.
  • Loose weight to slow down the progression of atherosclerosis.

Consult an experienced Vascular & Interventional Specialist in your city.

Studies on Obesity and PAD

A recent study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association revealed that higher body mass index (BMI), increases the risk of developing PAD. Some research has indicated that obesity may cause an inflammatory response in the body and inflammation may block your arteries and can slow down the healing process of PAD.

Doctors repeatedly saying that obesity increases a person’s risk of several medical conditions and complications, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Research studies have also said that obese people without high blood pressure or high cholesterol can also develop PAD.

The study determined that obese patients with PAD were more likely to get CLI(Critical Limb Ischemia). Some patients think that there is no need to lose weight if they already have PAD, but maintaining a healthy weight can significantly decrease the chances of developing CLI(Critical Limb Ischemia).

Should I worry About Critical Limb Ischemia?

People with CLI usually experience severe leg or foot pain that doesn’t get better with rest. CLI is the most advanced stage of PAD. Once you get CLI(Critical Limb Ischemia), it can be extremely difficult for your doctor to repair the damage.

Nearly 40 percent of patients with CLI may require limb amputation within a year even with ongoing treatment. Not everyone with PAD goes on to develop CLI. However, if your PAD isn’t properly treated, you may still experience a variety of complications. Severe PAD may require hospitalization or painful surgeries, including amputation.

A person having PAD can reduce the risk of further Complications?

If you have PAD and you’re overweight or obese, losing weight can help decrease your chances of developing complications like CLI.

Your Vascular Specialist can help you develop a treatment plan for shedding excess pounds safely and effectively. Other lifestyle changes can also help promote a healthy circulatory system.

Your Vascular Specialist may suggest that you:

  • Eat a heart-healthy diet.
  • Do more exercise
  • Quit smoking.
  • Reduce stress levels.

Medications can also help manage several risk factors, including high blood pressure and diabetes. If you have these conditions, be sure to follow up with your doctor’s recommended treatments. Uncontrolled diabetes or high blood pressure can significantly increase your risk of developing CLI.

For some patients, lifestyle changes and medications are not sufficient to stop or slow down the progression of PAD. If during the ongoing PAD treatment, you feel less or no recovery then consult your minimally invasive procedure specialist doctor for other treatments available to open up the blocked arteries.

Some procedures used to treat PAD include:

  • Angioplasty
  • Stent placemnt
  • Atherectomy
  • Bypass Surgery
  • Thrombolytic therapy

Many patients may wait until their symptoms worsen before seeking treatment. However, it’s important to understand the risks that come with delaying treatment. When tissues in your body don’t receive enough oxygen and nutrients, they can be permanently destroyed. Lack of oxygen can lead to infected sores or tissue death.

It’s essential that PAD patients receive the care they need before they develop complications like CLI. If you’re concerned about PAD, remember that many risk factors for critical limb ischemia can be successfully managed. The right treatment can keep your vascular system healthy and prevent life-threatening complications.

If you are Diabetic, Hypertensive, Obese then you are at risk for PAD. If you need information on PAD then feel free to visit or call 9868887666 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Virender Sheorain, a Vascular & interventional Specilaist at Medanta Hospital Gurgaon.


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