Peripheral vascular disease is a vascular condition that impairs blood flow through the peripheral circulation, which includes the blood vessels that carry blood away from the heart to the peripheral tissues rather than the heart and brain, such as the upper and lower extremities.
In peripheral vascular disease, peripheral blood vessels narrow due to a variety of causes, which decreases blood supply to the peripheral tissues. Low blood supply means low oxygen supply and ischemia. Without enough blood and oxygen, body cells can’t perform their function well, and they may die if this ischemia prolonged, which leads to a variety of symptoms depending on the affected part. The peripheral vascular disease usually affects the legs, and its leg symptoms range from pain to gangrene, which may require amputation if left untreated. Thus, early diagnosis and proper treatment are essential to avoid tissue loss and disability.
Peripheral vascular disease affects both sexes and more common among older people. According to the center for disease prevention and control (CDC), it affects 12%-20% of people older than 60 years old. It is a potential cause of death among people older than 60 years and diabetics, and most people with PVD are asymptomatic. The good news is that we have effective management plans that can prevent a lot of complications and improve the quality of life for these patients.
The peripheral vascular disease usually affects the arteries; thus, peripheral vascular disease (PVD) is another name for peripheral artery disease (PAD).
we will know more about the peripheral vascular disease by answering the following questions:
- What are the causes and risk factors of peripheral vascular disease?
- What is the pathophysiology of this disease?
- What are its symptoms?
- How do physicians diagnose it?
- How can physicians treat it?