What is a Leg Problem?
We are fortunate to be able to use our legs every day to their fullest potential, but if you have the following concerns, you may have PAD (Peripheral Artery Disease):
- Wounds on feet or lower legs
- Leg heaviness, fatigue or weakness
- Numbness of the legs or feet
- Night cramping or soreness when lying down
Risk Factors That Contribute to Leg Problems
PAD is the most common cause of the aforementioned leg concerns. Peripheral Artery Disease occurs when there is a blockage in the blood vessels. This restricts blood flow to your leg, causing wounds and feelings of numbness or heaviness. You may be at greater risk of PAD and, therefore, leg problems if you:
- Have diabetes
- Have high cholesterol
- Have high blood pressure
- Are suffering from kidney failure
- Are overweight/obese
What Happens When Leg Problems are Left Untreated or Unaddressed?
When blood flow to the legs is critically reduced, you might experience fatigue with less and less effort. Your legs may feel heavy or numb from the nerves of the leg being deprived of blood. Most patients who suffer from this will start walking less and less due to pain in their legs or feet or simply because they just feel so tired.
If your overall level of activity falls, you are also at much higher risk of suffering from heart attacks and strokes.
As your blood flow continues to decline, you may develop infections or wounds on your feet, which heal very slowly if you have PAD. If your body’s ability to heal is impeded, you may require amputation.
Treating and Preventing Leg Problems
We seek to identify these problems early on when preventive medications and procedures can help you maintain the full enjoyment of life. The key to identifying, treating, and even preventing leg problems early on is to get regular screenings if you are at risk of developing PAD.
Dr. Davis is Committed to Protecting You From Leg Problems
Leg problems due to PAD can be serious and life threatening if unaddressed. If you are concerned about leg problems due to PAD, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Davis, our Houston cardiothoracic surgeon. He is dedicated to helping you live a healthy and fulfilling life by protecting you from PAD and the leg problems that may result from it.