“Get a Leg Up” on Vascular Health; Free Peripheral Vascular Disease Screenings at St. Mary Medical Center

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Free Peripheral Vascular Disease Screenings St. Mary Medical Center will conduct free screenings for peripheral arterial disease P.A.D. (also known as peripheral vascular disease) on Thursday, September 13, 2012 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the St. Mary Heart Center at 1050 Linden Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90813. Those interested may call 562-491-9588 to schedule an appointment time.

Approximately 1 in 20 Americans over 50 has P.A.D., a common and potentially life-threatening vascular disease that affects the vessels in the legs and can lead to heart attack, stroke, amputation and death. September is P.A.D. Awareness Month, and St. Mary Medical Center is reaching out to the community to share about the risk factors, warning signs and consequences of P.A.D.

P.A.D. occurs when arteries in the legs become narrowed or clogged with fatty deposits, reducing blood flow to the legs. This can result in leg muscle pain when walking, disability, amputation, and poor quality of life. Blocked arteries found in people with P.A.D. can be a red flag that other arteries, including those in the heart and brain, may also be blocked – increasing the risk for heart attack or stroke.

Everyone over the age of 50 is at risk for P.A.D. Risk increases if a person:

  • Smokes, or used to smoke;
  • Has diabetes;
  • Has high blood pressure;
  • Has abnormal blood cholesterol;
  • Is African American;
  • Has a personal history of coronary heart disease or stroke.

In many cases, P.A.D. is a silent disease, causing no recognizable symptoms. However, if a person has symptoms they may include:

  • “Claudication” – fatigue, heaviness, tiredness or cramping in the leg muscles (calf, thigh or buttocks) that occurs during activity – such as walking – and goes away with rest.
  • Foot or toe pain at rest that often disturbs sleep
  • Skin wounds or ulcers on the feet or toes that are slow to heal (or that do not heal for 8 to 12 weeks).

“P.A.D. is a devastating disease that is often undiagnosed,” stated St. Mary Cardiologist Dr. Nik Kapoor, a P.A.D. specialist. “By teaming up with the P.A.D. Coalition, St. Mary Medical Center is working to increase awareness of P.A.D. and improve our community’s vascular health.”

Come and be screened to find out if you have P.A.D. The painless screening test for P.A.D. is called the ankle-brachial index, non-invasive test that compares the blood pressure in the ankles with the blood pressure in the arms.

Take the test to the right and call for an appointment if you have checked one or more boxes. To schedule an appointment, call [insert hospital phone number].

For more information on P.A.D., visit www.PADcoalition.org.

About St. Mary Medical Center
Founded by the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word in 1923, St. Mary Medical Center, a member of Dignity Health, offers a full continuum of primary and secondary acute care services to the Greater Long Beach community. With more than 600 physicians, 1,456 employees and 389 private rooms, St. Mary is committed to providing a unique balance of leading edge technology, while ensuring dignity and compassionate care of body, mind and spirit to the community it serves. For more information, please visit us at http://www.stmarymedicalcenter.org.

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