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Treatment of Peripheral Vascular Disease

There are a variety of treatment options cardiologists can use to treat peripheral vascular disease, depending on your age, overall health and the extent of the disease. Your physician might recommend lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, exercise, and proper nutrition to help reduce blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels which may lessen the advancement of your PVD.

Often, peripheral vascular disease occurs as a result of other diseases and conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and high blood cholesterol. Aggressive treatment of these prior conditions may lessen the severity of your PVD. If the severity of your PVD is mild, your physician might be able to monitor symptoms with medications, such as antiplatelet agents (blood thinners) and medications that relax the blood vessel walls.

If symptoms continue to worsen, our trained staff can use one of the following procedures to treat your peripheral vascular disease:



Minimally Invasive Procedures

Interventionists are physicians dedicated to preventing heart attacks, stokes, and other life threating episodes by performing minimally invasive, catheter-based procedures in a cath lab. An interventionist will perform a percutaneous intervention to create a bigger opening in the blood vessel to increase blood flow to vital tissues. The interventionist will work with specially trained nurses and technologists to perform the following procedures:

  • Atherectomy - a procedure to open a blocked artery or vein by using a device on the end of a catheter inserted into a major vessel to cut or shave away the plaque collected on the wall of the vessel.
  • Balloon Angioplasty - a balloon is inserted through a catheter and guided to the area of blockage in the artery. The balloon is inflated to compress the blockage and create a bigger opening to increase blood flow
  • Laser angioplasty - a laser "vaporizes" the blockage in the artery
  • Stenting - A vascular stent is a tiny coil that is inserted through a catheter in the groin area and placed in the vessel to open the blockage.

Surgical Options

Femoral Popliteal Bypass Surgery can use a vessel taken from another area of the leg or a man-made synthetic graft. An incision is made in the upper thigh and the bypass graft is sewn above and below the blockage in the vessel.

Femorofemoral bypass surgery mostly uses man-made graft material. A tunnel is made in the lower pelvic region connecting both femoral arteries by making incisions in the groin area on both sides. The graft is sewn to each femoral artery to reestablish blood flow to the lower extremities.