Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) refers to diseases of blood vessels located outside of the heart or brain. When blood vessels in the arms, legs, or organs are narrowed, the blood flow required for ordinary function is restricted.
Peripheral Artery Disease
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is the most common form of PVD. PAD develops when the arteries that carry blood to the arms, legs and internal organs become blocked or partially blocked from fatty buildup in the arterial walls. As a result, the extremities (usually the legs) don't get enough blood. PAD can also be a sign of widespread accumulation of fatty buildup which may also be limiting blood flow to the heart and brain.
Initial symptoms include leg pain when walking, cramping or tiredness in the extremities, leg numbness or weakness, cold legs or feet, sores on toes, legs or feel that won't heal, or hair loss on feet and legs.
PAD risk factors include age, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking.