Successful treatment of your peripheral artery disease (PAD) can make a significant difference in your life by –
- Reducing your risk of heart attack and stroke
- Relieving pain and other symptoms that have been preventing you from doing the many things you used to enjoy
- Saving your legs and feet from serious infection, gangrene and amputation
Spectrum of Care
The type of treatment you receive for PAD, as with cardiovascular disease in general, depends on your personal circumstances, the extent of disability and risk, and the nature of the problem.
If you have blockages in your arteries, your physician will assess the severity of your cardiovascular disease and where you best fit among a range of treatment options. This is sometimes referred to as the spectrum of care. The spectrum of care options for cardiovascular disease consist of a combination of treatments including --
Options for revascularization include:
Some patients may be at the beginning stages of cardiovascular disease. In this case, changing lifestyle elements, such as diet and exercise, might be enough to get you back on track for good health. For other patients, medication in addition to lifestyle changes can slow or reverse the progress of cardiovascular disease. For patients with more advanced disease, revascularization, in addition to medication and lifestyle changes, may be necessary.
If you have an interventional cardiologist on your care team, he or she will work in conjunction with other healthcare providers to determine which treatment options are likely to benefit you most. These treatment decisions are based on your team’s education and experience, and on practice guidelines (the standards developed by leading experts in the field of cardiovascular medicine to guide the profession). These frequently updated guidelines are drafted after careful review of all the peer-reviewed information and data available.
Throughout the decision-making process, you, the patient, also a core member of the care team. You can help your care team determine which treatment options make the most sense for you based on your desired quality of life. Participating in your own care starts with something as simple as writing down questions you may have about the procedure and bringing that list to your next appointment. Your interventional cardiologist can work with you to find a truly individualized treatment.
To learn more about the treatment options for PAD, check out these pages: