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What are some treatments for peripheral artery disease?

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Quick Answer

The treatments for peripheral artery disease include medications, lifestyle changes and surgical procedures, states the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Peripheral artery disease develops when the arteries narrow, reducing blood flow to the limbs, reports Mayo Clinic.

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Full Answer

Medications are used to treat the symptoms of peripheral artery disease and prevent complications, explains the NHLBI. These medications prevent blood clots, reduce elevated cholesterol levels and relieve the pain caused by reduced blood flow to the limbs. A person with peripheral artery disease should also make lifestyle changes to help manage the condition. Increasing physical activity, reducing cholesterol levels and maintaining normal blood pressure help relieve symptoms and prevent peripheral artery disease from worsening. People with peripheral artery disease should also stop smoking and work on reducing their blood sugar levels if they have diabetes.

Angioplasty, bypass grafting and atherectomy are the procedures used to treat peripheral artery disease, states the NHLBI. Angioplasty helps restore normal blood flow to a narrowed artery. Bypass grafting is indicated when blood flow to one of the limbs is partially or completely blocked. During this procedure, the surgeon makes a graft out of a healthy blood vessels, allowing blood to flow around the blocked artery. Atherectomy is a procedure used to remove arterial plaque. The doctor uses a small cutting device to remove plaque from the affected blood vessel.

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