Peripheral Artery Disease

Peripheral artery disease (also called peripheral arterial disease) is a common circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries reduce blood flow to your limbs.

When you develop peripheral artery disease (PAD), your legs or arms — usually your legs — don’t receive enough blood flow to keep up with demand. This may cause symptoms, such as leg pain when walking (claudication).

Peripheral artery disease is also likely to be a sign of a buildup of fatty deposits in your arteries (atherosclerosis). This condition may narrow your arteries and reduce blood flow to your legs and, occasionally, your arms.

Signs of Peripheral Artery Disease

Peripheral artery disease symptoms may include:

  • Painful cramping in one or both of your hips, thighs or calf muscles after certain activities, such as walking or climbing stairs
  • Leg numbness or weakness
  • Coldness in your lower leg or foot, especially when compared with the other side
  • Sores on your toes, feet or legs that won’t heal
  • A change in the color of your legs
  • Hair loss or slower hair growth on your feet and legs
  • Slower growth of your toenails
  • Shiny skin on your legs
  • No pulse or a weak pulse in your legs or feet
  • Erectile dysfunction in men
  • Pain when using your arms, such as aching and cramping when knitting, writing or doing other manual tasks

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