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Is There A Surgery For Peripheral Artery Disease & Life Expectancy Of Someone With It?

Angioplasty, atherectomy, and atherectomy are some of the surgeries for peripheral artery disease.(1)(2)(3)

Nearly 150,000 to 175,000 Americans suffer from this condition and undergo limb amputation. These people also have reduced life expectancy.(4)

The arteries play the role of transporting blood from the heart to other parts of the body. This allows the legs and muscles to perform movements and walk normally.

However, when there is a blockage in the arteries resulting in reduced blood circulation, the condition is called peripheral artery disease (PAD)

Early detection and treatment can help manage the symptoms and the patients can lead a longer life with a normal range of motion. However, when the disease starts to progress, it may cause a multitude of complications.

Is There A Surgery For Peripheral Artery Disease?

Is There A Surgery For Peripheral Artery Disease?

Several health complications are treated with lifestyle modifications or using the right medication. Although these are helpful in several instances, in really tough cases surgery may be required. With peripheral artery disease, plaque accumulates in the arteries that transport plasma to your cranium, tissues, and extremities. Plaque in the arteries is a fatty, waxy substance found in the blood. When the plaque hardens, it causes pain during movements and activities and eventually leads to heart attack and stroke.

If medications and diet doesn’t improve your symptoms your healthcare provider may suggest for any of the following

Angioplasty- The arteries are narrowed in peripheral artery disease patients and angioplasty widens the artery where you have a blockage. During this procedure, a thin flexible tube called a catheter is inserted to the artery and threaded to the arteries to remove the block. Peripheral artery disease patients after angioplasty showed better results when compared with conventional balloon dilation or bare-metal stents.1,2

Atherectomy- This is an alternative treatment for angioplasty and bypass surgery. Atherectomy is a novel method for the removal of atherosclerotic plaque from the diseased arteries. These devices may vary depending on the lesion characteristics. Despite advanced technologies and varied devices, there are fewer efficiency and safety studies with this approach.

Bypass Surgery- Like all surgical procedures, bypass surgery has the potential risk of failures and wound healing problems. However, this is an open option for restoring blood flow when the artery is narrowed. Bypass surgery is usually performed by a vascular surgeon who can monitor your condition and ensure that your vital signs are good.3

All procedures are risky however angioplasty have reduced risk and less life-threatening risks than bypass surgery

Life Expectancy Of Someone With Peripheral Artery Disease

Research has demonstrated that the life expectancy of peripheral artery disease patients is very much reduced. The mortality and morbidity rates of these patients are fairly high and the risk of dying from heart disease is six times when compared to those who are not affected by this condition.

The typical symptoms of peripheral artery disease are fatigue and heaviness in the leg muscles, calves, and buttocks. These patients lead a poor quality of life because they encounter a hard time walking, climbing stairs, and performing normal daily routines. Nearly 150,000 to 175,000 Americans suffer from this condition and undergo limb amputation. These people also have reduced life expectancy.

Most older adults have some degree of sclerosis during their lifetime. It is more common in men when compared to female and a certain percent of people progress with their condition necessitating limb amputation despite the mass percentage of patients remain stable or improve over five years.4

Peripheral artery disease patients have a greater risk of developing heart attack and stroke and several cases of death occur as a result of myocardial infarction and cardiovascular diseases.


  1. “Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD).” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 17 July 2018, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/peripheral-artery-disease/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20350563
  2. Hyperarts, Rob Mayfield -. “Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD).” Department of Surgery – Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD), surgery.ucsf.edu/conditions–procedures/peripheral-artery-disease-(pad).aspx
  3. Contributor, NT. “Risk Factor Assessment for Patients with Peripheral Arterial Disease.” Nursing Times, 1 Aug. 2019, www.nursingtimes.net/clinical-archive/cardiovascular-clinical-archive/risk-factor-assessment-for-patients-with-peripheral-arterial-disease-01-09-2001/
  4. AgingCare.com. “Signs and Symptoms Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD).” Signs and Symptoms of PAD: Peripheral Arterial Disease – AgingCare.com, 19 Nov. 2009, www.agingcare.com/articles/peripheral-arterial-disease-signs-and-symptoms-of-pad-136893.htm

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Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Sheetal DeCaria, M.D.
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Sheetal DeCaria, M.D. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:October 1, 2021

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