Aging & Health A to Z
Peripheral Artery Disease
Basic Facts & Information
As many as one in five people over the age of 65 have the common circulation problem called peripheral artery disease (PAD). In this condition, arteries narrow and become blocked, most often in your pelvis and legs. This decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to your legs or arms and it is linked to heart attacks and stroke.
Peripheral artery disease often occurs together with coronary artery disease, because both conditions are caused by the same thing: the buildup of cholesterol blockages in arteries (known as atherosclerosis).
You can help prevent or slow the progression of peripheral artery disease by:
- Exercising regularly
- Quitting smoking and the use of other tobacco products
- Eating a healthy, low-fat diet
- Keeping your blood pressure, weight, and cholesterol under control
- If you have diabetes, keeping your blood sugar under control.
Updated: March 2012
Posted: March 2012