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Peripheral Artery Disease Specialist

Ellichman Vein & Vascular Centers

Jonathan J Ellichman, M.D.

Vascular Surgeon & Wound Care Specialist located in Memphis, TN

Around 6.5 million Americans over the age of 40 have peripheral artery disease (PAD) and live with uncomfortable symptoms and an increased risk of heart disease. At Ellichman Vein & Vascular Centers in Memphis, Tennessee, vascular surgeon Jonathan Ellichman, MD, diagnoses PAD and offers personalized treatment plans to open your arteries and improve your vascular health. Call the practice today or make an appointment online if you have concerns about PAD.

Peripheral Artery Disease Q & A

What is PAD?

Your peripheral arteries are the blood vessels that carry blood away from your heart and throughout your body. When plaque builds up inside your arteries and hardens them, it reduces the space available for your blood and interferes with your circulation.  

PAD often develops in your legs, although it can happen anywhere in your body, including cerebrovascular disease in your brain. When PAD affects your legs, it causes various uncomfortable symptoms, including:

  • Leg pain or cramping that’s worse during activity
  • Tired, aching legs
  • Leg numbness or weakness
  • Skin that is cool to the touch
  • Shiny or discolored skin
  • Slowly healing wounds

Your pain and other symptoms can become more severe over time, limiting your mobility or disrupting your sleep. PAD is also a warning sign of coronary heart disease and other cardiovascular health problems. 

What causes PAD?

Atherosclerosis is the most common cause of PAD. Atherosclerosis develops when fatty deposits build up inside your arteries and harden into plaque. Some of the common risk factors for PAD include:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Hyperlipidemia
  • Tobacco use
  • Obesity
  • Kidney disease

Your chances of developing PAD also increase if you’re over 60, African American, or have a family history of PAD.

How is PAD diagnosed?

If you have PAD symptoms, Dr. Ellichman reviews your medical history and lifestyle and completes a physical exam to look for PAD symptoms and other signs of cardiovascular disease. He orders blood tests and checks your blood pressure, pulse, and heartbeat. 

Dr. Ellichman also uses state-of-the-art vascular ultrasounds and the ankle-brachial index to check your circulation and blood pressure in your legs. 

How is PAD treated?

Following your exam, Dr. Ellichman creates a personalized treatment program to improve your circulation and address the underlying risk factors that contribute to your disease. 

For example, Dr. Ellichman may recommend adjusting your diet and getting more physical activity to improve your health and support weight loss. He might also prescribe medication to help control health issues, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes. 

In severe cases, Dr. Ellichman offers minimally invasive surgical procedures to remove or circumvent blockages such as angioplasty and bypass procedures.  

Call Ellichman Vein & Vascular Centers today or make an appointment online if you have PAD symptoms. The earlier you start treatment, the more likely you are to have a better overall outcome.