What Are Some Diseases of the Circulatory System?


Quick Answer

There are many diseases of the circulatory, or vascular, system, such as peripheral artery disease, Buerger's disease and peripheral venous disease, notes WebMD. Vascular diseases can affect the arteries, veins and lymph vessels and include blood disorders that impair circulation.

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Full Answer

People with peripheral artery disease suffer from a buildup of fat and cholesterol in the blood vessels outside the heart, causing a condition known as atherosclerosis, states WebMD. This buildup, called plaque, narrows the arteries and restricts blood flow, and may result in ischemia, a lack of blood flow to tissues. People suffering from peripheral artery disease may experience symptoms and complications such as chest pain, stroke, hypertension and heart failure.

Buerger's disease causes the arteries of the legs and arms to narrow or become blocked, causing pain and lack of blood supply to the extremities, according to WebMD. The disease generally affects small and medium nerves, veins and arteries and in severe cases can lead to gangrene and amputation of fingers or toes.

People suffering from peripheral venous disease have damage to the valves inside the veins that regulate blood flow to and from the muscles, notes WebMD. When this occurs, blood flows in both directions when the muscles relax, causing swelling and pooling of blood in the veins. The blood may then stick to the sides of blood vessels and cause clotting.

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