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Heart Health

Get a leg up to avoid complications from PAD

July 1, 2022

Regular walking is the best treatment for clogged leg arteries, a condition called peripheral artery disease (PAD).

If you notice a crampy, painful sensation in one of both of your legs when you walk, don’t automatically dismiss it as overexertion or aging. It could be peripheral artery disease (PAD), which happens when fatty deposits collect in arteries beyond the brain and heart — most commonly in the legs — and reduce blood flow to that area.

An estimated one in 10 people over age 55 has lower-extremity PAD. The same factors that cause plaque buildup in the heart arteries (coronary artery disease) also result in plaque deposits in the lower-extremity arteries: older age, smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.

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