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Senior with leg cramps.

Do Your Legs Hurt?

In the United States, more than 18 million Americans suffer from Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) which is the hardening of the arteries — also known as “atherosclerosis” — in the limbs, often the legs. Approximately 20 percent of individuals over the age of 60 has PAD, and many of those with PAD do not experience any symptoms, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Peripheral Artery Disease can reduce mobility and increase the risk for heart attack and stroke. If left untreated, PAD can be fatal.

Because vascular disease develops over time, it is important to lead a healthy lifestyle through awareness, prevention and risk reduction. That’s why we are offering the community a free screening to help determine if you are at risk of developing PAD.

Man grasping leg

What is PAD?

PAD occurs when arteries in the legs become narrowed or clogged with plaque (cholesterol), reducing blood flow to the legs. PAD can lead to leg pain when walking, disability, and even amputation. Blocked leg arteries can be a red flag that other arteries, including those to the heart and brain, may also be blocked increasing the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

The good news is that PAD can be treated by making lifestyle changes, taking medication and, if needed, having special procedures. With an early diagnosis and proper treatment, you can live well with PAD.

Risk Factors

People who smoke or have diabetes have the greatest risk of developing peripheral artery disease due to reduced blood flow.

Factors that increase your risk of developing peripheral artery disease include:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Obesity (A body mass index over 30)
  • A family history of peripheral artery disease, heart disease or stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Increasing age, especially after reaching 50 years of age
Woman with varicose veins on a leg walking using trekking poles

Signs & Symptoms

You could have PAD and not know it because the symptoms can develop slowly and are not always alarming.

Blockages can restrict blood flow to the muscles, causing muscle cramps, tightness or weakness, especially during activity. In the early stages of PAD, patients may not experience any symptoms. If PAD is not treated, though, blockages may continue to grow and restrict, or even completely block, blood flow.

Common symptoms include:

  • Leg pain when walking
  • Muscle pain or cramping in legs and calf triggered by activity
  • Leg numbness or weakness
  • Coldness on lower leg or foot
  • Sores on toes, legs or feet that won’t heal
  • Change in color of legs

Take Our PAD Risk Assessment

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Terms & Conditions

By participating in this quiz, or screening or health assessment, I recognize and accept all risks associated with it. I understand that the program will only screen for certain risk factors and does not constitute a complete physical exam. For the diagnosis of a medical problem, I must see a physician for a complete medical exam. I release Deborah Heart and Lung Center and any other organization(s) involved in this screening, and their employees and agents, from all liabilities, medical claims or expenses which may arise from my participation. Thank you for investing in your health by participating today.

Blood Pressure

Category Systolic mm Hg
(upper number)
and/or Diastolic mm Hg
(lower number)
Normal Less Than 120 and Less Than 80
Elevated 120 - 129 and Less Than 80
(Hypertension) Stage 1
High Blood Pressure
130 - 139 or 80-89
(Hypertension) Stage 2
High Blood Pressure
140 or Higher or 90 or Higher
Hypertensive Crisis
(Consult your doctor immediately)
Higher than 180 and/or Higher than 120

Cholesterol Levels in Adults

Level Total Cholesterol
High 240 or higher
Borderline 200-239
Good less than 200
Low n/a