Many people don’t realize that leg pain is one of the hallmark symptoms of vascular disease. Goke Akinwande, MD, at Midwest Institute for Non-surgical Therapy (MINT) specializes in getting to the bottom of your leg pain and developing a treatment plan that’s customized to alleviate your pain. You can prevent potential complications from vascular disease by getting an early diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Akinwande helps by offering free vascular screening. To schedule your screening, call one of the offices inSt. Louis and Wentzville MO, & Swansea, IL, or book an appointment online today.
Vascular conditions cause leg pain when they interfere with blood circulating through the arteries and veins.
The vascular problems responsible for leg pain include peripheral artery disease, venous insufficiency, varicose veins, and deep vein thrombosis.
PAD develops due to atherosclerosis, which is a buildup of cholesterol in the artery wall. Without treatment, the fatty plaque gets larger, hardens, and blocks blood flow.
When blood flow is limited, muscles and other tissues can’t get the oxygen and nutrients they need to function. This leads to the hallmark symptom of PAD: leg pain that occurs when you walk but feels better when you rest.
You develop venous insufficiency when valves in your leg veins fail. As a result, the blood that should go up through your leg refluxes instead and flows back down. This is called venous insufficiency.
As the refluxing blood accumulates, the engorged vein becomes a twisted, bulging varicose vein. Varicose veins typically cause leg pain, aching, or cramping.
DVT — a blood clot in a deep leg vein — can contribute to venous insufficiency if the DVT goes undetected. Otherwise, DVT causes sudden leg pain and may also cause swelling, redness, and warmth.
This condition needs immediate medical care. It can turn into a life-threatening problem if the clot breaks free and travels to your lungs.
Although it’s not a vascular condition, neuropathy (nerve damage) can also lead to pain. Peripheral neuropathy, a condition frequently caused by diabetes or injury, causes leg pain and cramps.
In addition to the types of pain caused by PAD, varicose veins, and DVT, you may experience other leg symptoms such as:
Venous ulcers develop when pressure caused by venous insufficiency forces fluids out of the veins in your lower leg. The fluids break down the skin and cause an open sore.
Arterial ulcers develop when advanced PAD severely blocks blood flow. A wound develops as the tissues break down due to the lack of oxygen. Venous and arterial ulcers won’t heal without specialized wound care at MINT.
Your leg pain treatment depends on the underlying cause of the problem. Your provider at MINT evaluates your leg and does diagnostic imaging in the office before recommending the best treatment option.
Don’t wait to get relief from leg pain. Call Midwest Institute for Non-surgical Therapy or schedule an appointment online today.