Harvard Health Letter

Prevent peripheral artery disease

Peripheral artery disease has four main risk factors: smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes. The more risk factors one accumulates, the higher the risk, and the severity of risk factors increases risk. Developing all four of the risk factors can increase PAD risk to 75%. Avoiding all four risk factors can eliminate many cases of PAD before they start. Treating PAD involves quitting smoking; controlling diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure; and sometimes surgery to improve blood flow.
To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »