How Does Vascular Testing Work?

How Does Vascular Testing Work?

Did you know that your body contains about 60,000 miles of blood vessels? They compose your vascular, or circulatory, system, which carries blood and lymph (white blood cell-rich fluid) throughout your body, sending nutrients and oxygen to your tissues and taking away waste. 

This blood vessel highway begins and ends with your heart. 

Unfortunately, vascular diseases like atherosclerosis (fatty plaque buildup within your arteries) strikes many people, and one of the most prevalent and concerning of these is peripheral artery disease, or PAD. We’ll talk more about what it is and its symptoms later in the post. 

No matter what vascular issue your podiatrist suspects, testing must be done that helps them confirm your diagnosis, and this is where vascular testing figures in.

If you’re suffering with certain symptoms that point to vascular problems, the expert podiatry team at Premier Foot & Ankle is ready to administer sophisticated vascular testing from any of our nine convenient Texas locations. 

Your provider partners with you to arrive at a sound diagnosis, which will inform the individualized treatment plan created just for you. You’re in the best care at Premier Foot & Ankle, no matter what service you need.

Why peripheral artery disease can be confusing

PAD can fool you because its signs can easily be mistaken for simple aging, but the condition affects 8-12 million people. Symptoms include:

If left untreated, PAD, which is caused by atherosclerosis, can progress to cause serious complications. Another worrisome fact about PAD is that often you don’t feel any symptoms until an artery is narrowed by 60% or more. 

PAD can put you at risk for life-threatening conditions, including heart attack, stroke, renal artery disease, and diabetes-related amputation. 

Why vascular testing is vital to diagnosing PAD

At Premier Foot & Ankle, we’re very PAD-aware because of the risks it poses to your health. We’re committed to keeping on top of it for our patients, because it’s a very underdiagnosed condition. We test your vascular functioning using several noninvasive vascular tests. 

One test we do measures your blood pressure and determines your ankle-brachial index (ABI), which is calculated by dividing the blood pressure in one of your ankle arteries by the blood pressure in one of your arm arteries. We use blood pressure cuffs that are connected to a computer to perform this test.

We also do a test that delivers pulse volume recording (PVR) waveforms. Blood pressure cuffs and ultrasound gather data about your arterial blood flow in your arms and legs. This test helps us discover not only if you have PAD, but it allows us to pinpoint its location and determine its severity. 

How to lower your risk for PAD

You can play a part in discouraging PAD from developing as well:

It’s essential to be aware of the symptoms of peripheral artery disease, so you can identify them and get them checked out as soon as possible to avoid life-altering problems.

Once we make a diagnosis, we can start managing your PAD promptly with medication, minimally invasive treatments, or surgical options. 

Schedule a consultation today by calling the Premier Foot & Ankle office most convenient to you, or request an appointment online. 

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