Blocked arteries in legs can lead you to suffer from cramps and pain in your hips, calves or legs while you are walking, running or sitting. This condition is usually affected by coronary artery disease and its medical term is peripheral arterial disease (PAD). The blood in your leg`s arteries gets clogged and that is what is making the blockage of the fluent blood flow to the leg. It is often painful and its sufferers can experience a burning sensation in the legs. Claudication is a limp in the leg caused by the improper blood flow. PAD should be treated as soon as the visible symptoms are noticed, particularly because people suffering from PAD are prone to have cardiovascular stroke.
Causes of Blocked Arteries in Legs
There are several causes that can lead you to have peripheral arterial disease. Older people whose arteries are clogged due to the buildup of atheromatous plaque or cholesterol often suffer from PAD. This condition can happen unexpectedly. Sitting in one position for a long time, for example, in an airplane, can cause the blocked arteries in legs due to the insufficient blood flow to the leg. High cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, smoking, diabetes, clotting disorders, aneurysms, deep vein thrombosis, and atrial fibrillation could be some of the causes of this condition. A person needs to be physically active and lead a healthy lifestyle so as not to suffer from blocked arteries in legs.
Symptoms of Blocked Arteries in Legs
Many symptoms could be listed as the symptoms of the PAD. Weakness and cramps in hips, thighs, calves and legs could be some of them. Sufferers of the PAD can also experience pain in the legs and numb and cold feet. Arteries may be blocked due to the gangrene infection, wounds, sores, ulcers or loss of hair.
Treatment of Blocked Arteries in Legs
It is easier to treat a condition if you follow the symptoms. If you are a smoker, you should definitely think about quitting. You may use medications like statins to reduce the cholesterol in your body if needed. Sometimes, as it is case with high blood pressure patients, the doctor can prescribe certain medications to prevent from the aggravating of the condition. Proper exercises are recommended for the treatment of the PAD. Physical activity keeps the arteries and muscles active and the blood flow in the legs is not reduced. In some cases, beta-blockers, blood thinners or ACE inhibitors have to be used. Medications such as streptokinase or tissue plasminogen activator are often used for treating the blocked arteries in legs. In cases of unsuccessful treatment used by drugs, the surgeries are performed. Surgeries that help in removing the buildup of plaque include bypass, thrombolytic therapy and endarterectomy, which is performed by making a small incision on the artery.