Pain in the leg, and a diagnosis of a blockage in one or more of the arteries in the leg is an indication of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). Intervention may be required in order to improve the blood flow to your lower leg and feet.
Diabetics and those who have smoked tobacco products for long periods of their life have much higher incidence of having peripheral arterial disease than nondiabetics and nonsmokers. Historically, blockages were treated with some form of bypass with artificial graft material or sometimes the superficial vein from your leg.
Endovascular treatment can usually be performed as an outpatient procedure starting with a simple needle puncture in the groin. A combination of balloon angioplasty, atherectomy, and placing stents is utilized for blocked or narrowed arteries. Sometimes fully occluded (closed) arteries can be restored.
Patients with PAD need to be followed very closely and multiple staged procedures may need to be performed.
The goal in improving the circulation to the legs in cases of blocked arteries it to avoid the end stage of peripheral vascular disease, which includes gangrene and subsequent possible amputation.
It is very important to perform diagnostic testing for peripheral artery disease if you have any symptoms of leg pain when walking. These tests are easy to perform, non-invasive, and not painful.