According to the American Heart Association Peripheral Arterial Disease, or PAD, affects 8–12 million Americans. More commonly known as "hardening of the arteries", nearly 75% of those affected do not display any symptoms. It becomes more common as one gets older, and by age 70, about 20 percent of the population has it. Diagnosis is critical, as people with PAD face a six-to-seven times higher risk of heart attack or stroke.
PAD results from fatty deposits (plaque) that build up in the arteries outside the heart (peripheral arteries supply the legs and feet.) This buildup narrows or blocks your arteries and reduces the amount of blood and oxygen delivered to your leg muscles and feet.
Since there are often no symptoms or warning signs for peripheral arterial disease it often goes undiagnosed. Because individuals with PAD have an increased risk for heart attack and stroke, a preventative HealthSmart PAD screening can help identify this disease early so that you and your physician can take corrective action.
Controllable PAD risk factors include:
- Physical Inactivity
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
Uncontrollable PAD risk factors include: