Peripheral artery disease, or PAD, is a condition where fatty deposits build up in the arteries, restricting blood flow to muscles and organs. This poor circulation affects about 6.5 million Americans over 40 years of age. During physical activities such as walking or climbing stairs, muscles need more blood and oxygen. If arteries are clogged due to PAD, these muscles may hurt because they are not getting what they need, but the pain typically subsides with rest. However, PAD is more than just about muscle pain during activity. It can affect the overall quality and length of life, limiting how far or long one can walk, and it may increase the risk for heart attack and stroke. Despite its seriousness, PAD often goes unrecognized. People at risk for PAD typically include those who have leg pain, individuals over 70 years of age, and those over 50 years old who have diabetes, or a history of smoking. Recognizing and getting treatment for PAD is crucial for maintaining health and preventing more serious complications. If you have any of the aforementioned symptoms, or belong to a high-risk group, it is strongly suggested that you make an appointment with a podiatrist as soon as possible for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

Peripheral artery disease can pose a serious risk to your health. It can increase the risk of stroke and heart attack. If you have symptoms of peripheral artery disease, consult with one of our podiatrists from Biebel & DeCotiis Podiatry Associates. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is when arteries are constricted due to plaque (fatty deposits) build-up. This results in less blood flow to the legs and other extremities. The main cause of PAD is atherosclerosis, in which plaque builds up in the arteries.


Symptoms of PAD include:

  • Claudication (leg pain from walking)
  • Numbness in legs
  • Decrease in growth of leg hair and toenails
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Sores and wounds on legs and feet that won’t heal
  • Coldness in one leg

It is important to note that a majority of individuals never show any symptoms of PAD.


While PAD occurs in the legs and arteries, Podiatrists can diagnose PAD. Podiatrists utilize a test called an ankle-brachial index (ABI). An ABI test compares blood pressure in your arm to you ankle to see if any abnormality occurs. Ultrasound and imaging devices may also be used.


Fortunately, lifestyle changes such as maintaining a healthy diet, exercising, managing cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and quitting smoking, can all treat PAD. Medications that prevent clots from occurring can be prescribed. Finally, in some cases, surgery may be recommended.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Holmdel and Middletown, NJ . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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