What is Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)?
Peripheral Arterial Disease occurs when there is a build up of cholesterol and plaque on the arteries of the lower extremities, causing decreased blood flow to the legs and feet.
Who is at risk for PAD?
- All patients 70 years or older
- Patients 50 years or older with a history of diabetes or cigarette smoking.
Typical Symptoms of PAD:
Patients may experience some of all of the following:
- Pain in the legs brought on by walking and relieved with rest
- Pain the legs at rest due to poor circulation
- Poorly healing wounds on lower extremities
- Injury to lower limb or foot involving vessels
What is the PADnet test?
Thus test provides early detection of PAD when treatment options are the broadest. Treatment may included both lifestyle modification and non-invasive and invasive medical treatments.
The test detects blockages in the arteries and the quality of blood flow using pulse-volume recordings and segmental blood pressure measurements.
How to prepare for a PADnet test:
This test requires minimal preparation.
- You will be asked to remove clothing that covers your arms and legs, keeping you underwear on. You may need to remove your socks and shoes as well. A gown may be provided.
- The test takes about 15-20 minutes.
- Do not smoke or use tobacco for 30 minutes prior to your test. Smoking restricts the peripheral arteries and can interfere with the results.
- You will need to lie flat for the testing. If this will be a problem for you, please discuss this with your provider or the technician performing the exam.
What to expect during the PADnet test:
You will be asked to lie down in the exam table. Pressure cuffs will be wrapped around snugly around your arms, above knees, calves and ankles. The technician will inflate the cuffs and sensors in the cuffs will record the pulse waves that correspond to each beat of your heart.
Blood pressures will also be recorded in your arms and ankles. The ABI (Ankle- Brachial index) is determined by the ratio between these pressures.
PAD is diagnosed if your ankle pressures is 90% or lower than your arm pressure. With severe narrowing, the ABI may be less than 50%. If the ABI is abnormal, your doctor may recommend additional testing.
After your test you may return to your normal routine.