PAD is often underdiagnosed. One in 20 Americans over age 50 has PAD, and one in three Americans over 50 with diabetes is likely to have it.
Since PAD often has no noticeable symptoms, it is important to know the factors that could put you more at risk. These include:
- high blood pressure
- high cholesterol
- personal history of heart or vascular disease
- Age (people are more likely to get PAD as they get older)
- Race (African-Americans are twice as likely as Caucasians to have the disease.)
Just knowing your risk can help you to be on the lookout for PAD warning signs while also reducing the factors that you can control.
Though not all people with PAD have symptoms, there are some potential warning signs that might indicate you have PAD. If you have any of these symptoms, you should tell your doctor:
- Leg pain or cramping while walking that goes away after resting
- Leg or foot pain that keeps you from sleeping
- Feet that are pale, blue or cold to the touch
- Toenails that do not grow as well as before
- Decreased hair growth on the toes and legs
Treatments for PAD may include lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise, physical therapy, medications, and in extreme cases, surgery.”
PAD Can Lead to Non-Healing Wounds
If left untreated, PAD can lead to ulcers on the legs and feet that are stubborn and difficult to heal. These wounds can lead to other serious complications, including amputation and even death. The Wound Treatment Centers at MidMichigan Health specialize in treating chronic, non-healing wounds such as those that stem from PAD.
With locations in Alma, Clare, Midland and West Branch, the Wound Treatment Centers use a multi-disciplinary approach to treat not only the wound, but also the underlying conditions that can interfere with healing. These include diabetes, vascular conditions, infectious disease and more. The Centers have specialized equipment and protocols that speed healing and that succeed where conventional treatments fail. As a result, the Wound Treatment Centers have a median time to heal of 28 days and 94 percent patient satisfaction.
Treatments for leg ulcers may include dressings, compression therapy and hyperbaric oxygen therapy to increase the blood flow and reintroduce the body’s innate ability to heal.
Take Action. Seek Specialized Treatment
If you or someone you love is living with a non-healing wound, don’t wait – seek specialized treatment. Call the Wound Treatment Centers toll free at (877) 683-0800 or visit www.midmichigan.org/woundcenter.