Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)
Build-up of plaque in blood vessels that supply the arms and legs can cause muscle pain during walking and exercise. These blockages can be treated using minimally invasive techniques. Blockage location is isolated using Doppler ultrasound, CT, CT angiography, MR angiography and, when necessary, angiography. Intervention varies according to diagnosis and may include conservative therapy, endovascular revascularization or open bypass. Balloon angioplasty and stent placement is a common treatment for blockages in larger vessels. Less frequently, deposits are removed by atherectomy using either a laser or a tiny, rotating knife inside a catheter to shave the obstruction from the arterial wall. The procedure is followed by stent placement, if required.