- by Dr. Sunil Dwivedi
- 0 Shares
- Aug 18 2017
DIAGNOSIS OF PERIPHERAL ARTERY DISEASE
To diagnose peripheral artery disease, your doctor may rely on the following tests:
- Physical exam. On physical examination, your doctor may find signs of PAD such as a weak or absent pulse below a narrowed area of your artery, whooshing sounds (bruits) over your arteries that can be heard with a stethoscope, evidence of poor wound healing in the area where your blood flow is restricted, and decreased blood pressure in your affected limb.
- Ankle-brachial index (ABI). One of the most common tests to diagnose PAD is ABI. The doctor will compare the blood pressure in your ankle with the blood pressure in your arm. Your doctor uses a regular blood pressure cuff to get a blood pressure reading and a special ultrasound device to evaluate blood pressure and flow. Doctor will ask you to walk on a treadmill and have readings taken before and immediately after exercising to capture the severity of the narrowed arteries during walking.
- Ultrasound. Doppler ultrasound is a special ultrasound imaging technique that can help your doctor evaluate blood flow through your blood vessels and identify blocked or narrowed arteries.
- Angiography. In this test a dye (contrast material) is injected into your blood vessels to view blood flow through your arteries as it happens. The flow of the contrast material is traced using imaging techniques, such as X-ray imaging or procedures called magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) or computerized tomography angiography (CTA). Another invasive procedure is catheter angiography. It involves guiding a catheter through an artery in your groin to the affected area and injecting the dye that way. This type of angiography, although invasive, allows for simultaneous diagnosis and treatment — finding the narrowed area of a blood vessel and then widening it with an angioplasty procedure or administering medication to improve blood flow.
- Blood tests. Blood tests need to be conducted to measure your cholesterol and triglycerides and to check for diabetes.
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