Many people who suffer from peripheral artery disease experience mild to absolutely no symptoms, though some have leg pain while walking for extended periods. Diagnosing the disease is often a challenging task. Due to there being few symptoms, and each being attributable to another disease altogether, doctors do not often catch peripheral artery disease quickly. It’s up to you to recognize the signs and symptoms beforehand.
Signs and Symptoms
When walking, you may experience muscle pain or cramping in both the legs and arms. This discomfort should disappear within a few minutes of rest. The location typically depends on the clogged or narrowed artery. The most common location is in the calf.
The severity of pain or cramping varies widely, from mild discomfort to extreme pain. Other symptoms you may notice include:
- Painful cramping in the hip, thigh, or calf
- Leg numbness
- Cold feeling in the lower leg and foot
- Sores on the toes, feet, or lower legs that do not heal
- Hair loss or slow growth on the feet and legs
- Slow growth of toenails
- Shiny skin patches
- No pulse in your legs or feet
- Erectile dysfunction in some men
When to Visit a Doctor
If you experience any of the above symptoms in abundance, you’ll want to seek medical attention promptly. Do not just dismiss your symptoms as a normal part of aging. It’s better to be safe and have each symptom examined properly.
Even if you have none of the symptoms as mentioned above, schedule a screen if:
- Over the age of 70
- Over the age of 50 with a history of smoking or diabetes
- Under 50, but with diabetes and other risk factors, such as high blood pressure
To schedule a screening for peripheral artery disease, contact Brookhaven Heart today by calling 631-654-3278. We’re here to help!