As a physician, I am observing Peripheral Artery Disease Awareness Month to increase public understanding the risks, effects and treatment options for PAD. A vascular disease that causes narrowing or blockage of arteries in the legs, PAD can result in life-altering limb amputations if not properly diagnosed and treated.
As a vascular specialist, I have treated hundreds of PAD patients over the course of my career. So I know the importance of recognizing PAD as soon as possible. With today’s technology, minimally invasive procedures can be performed in a physician office setting to improve artery flow significantly, and ultimately save limbs.
As a doctor, telling a patient a limb cannot be saved is one of the worst pieces of news to give. That’s why early diagnosis is so important, so these effective and life-changing procedures can be performed in time.
I urge all patients to talk to your medical provider if you are experiencing limb pain or unusual discomfort. Early diagnosis and intervention not only save a patient’s limb, but potentially a life as well.
During the month of September, I encourage everyone to participate in PAD Awareness month by showing support for the PAD community and helping the public better understand the risks, effects and symptoms of PAD.
Chris LeSar, MD
Vascular Institute of Chattanooga