Closeup of man's legs in beige pants walking upstairs. Hand held on one knee.

Peripheral Vascular/Arterial Disease

Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), also called peripheral vascular disease (PVD), refers to the hardening of the arteries. This is known as atherosclerosis, when plaque builds in an artery, diminishing blood flow over time and leading to tissue or organ damage. Patients with PAD often experience leg pain that occurs with walking causing, numbness and tingling in the feet, trouble walking, foot pain that wakes you at night, and sores that won’t heal.


Risk factors for PAD include:
  • Smoking

  • High blood pressure and/or cholesterol

  • Family history

  • Age

  • Diabetes

  • Obesity

  • Lack of exercise

There are a number of treatment options available, many of which can be conducted in an outpatient setting. CMC’s team of highly-trained physicians, technicians, and support staff can assess the best treatment options for you.

Learn more

 Symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatments and more (patient resources/videos from the Society for Vascular Surgery)

 Know When to Contact Your Doctor About Leg Pain. It is natural to experience growing aches and pains with age - but if you have persistent pain in your legs for no obvious reason, it is important to take it more seriously and notify your physician. 

diagnosis, treatment and technologies

lifestyle adjustments and medications

If you’re diagnosed with PAD, your provider will likely recommend a healthier lifestyle to help keep the disease from progressing. This may include losing weight, quitting smoking, and exercising. Medications are also available to help reduce symptoms and improve blood flow in the legs. A daily aspirin or other medication can also help prevent blood clots.

Interventional and surgical treatments

Several procedures can help improve blood flow in patients with PAD, including angioplasty and stenting. Angioplasty involves a balloon inserted into the artery through a small tube called a catheter which the doctor inflates to clear the blockage. A stent is small a mesh tube that stays in the artery and helps keep it open. Certain cases may be suitable for an atherectomy, which uses laser technology to dissolve the plaque that’s blocking the artery. In some situations, bypass surgery can replace the affected artery to restore blood flow.

Dr Patricia Furey

Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)

PAD, or peripheral arterial disease, is a form of vascular disease which affects the arteries outside the heart. Its symptoms – if there are any at all – vary widely and are similar to the symptoms for many other conditions, making PAD a stealthy disease. Learn more from Patricia Furey, MD, FACS, vascular surgeon at the New England Heart & Vascular Institute at CMC as she responds to the following frequently asked questions.


Vascular team

Our vascular physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and support staff bring extensive expertise and skill to each procedure, and take a personal interest in your well-being.

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