Patients who are referred to Modern Vascular often wonder exactly what will happen at their consultation. Although every patient is different, we will discuss what you can expect to happen in a standard Modern Vascular evaluation and consultation for Peripheral Artery Disease.
Patients with PAD are referred to Modern Vascular in one of few different ways: Primary Care Physician, Podiatrist, Vein Specialists and Endocrinologists (to name a few), or self-referrals. In terms of self-referrals, patients will have a conversation with our Patient Advocates after taking our PAD Assessment, which incorporates recognized risk factors from the American Heart Association.
Vascular & Doppler Ultrasound
On the day of a PAD Evaluation at Modern Vascular patients fill out new paperwork which will include questions related to a list of medications, current medical conditions, and providers (physicians/specialists) that they currently see.
After the paperwork is filled out an ultrasound will be administered by an ultrasound tech.
A vascular ultrasound uses sound waves to evaluate the body’s circulatory system. Doppler ultrasound is a special ultrasound technique that can help detect areas of restricted blood flow through an artery. Ultimately, these ultrasounds are used as a diagnostic tool to garner a clear picture.
Generally, there is a scan of the hip, entire leg, foot, the tip of the toe, slowed blockages, which help identify blockages or narrowing in the arteries, decreased circulation, and disease.
After the ultrasound is complete you will meet the Advanced Practice Provider (Nurse Practitioner or Physician Assistant). They will go over your complete medical history and ultrasound results and do a comprehensive physical exam. Depending upon the findings, you will learn about the appropriate treatment.
Treatment is unique for every patient and is dependent upon the severity of the blockage. Blockage can be categorized between minor, moderate, or severe. The provider will decipher the appropriate approach for the type of blockage.
Not every patient requires a procedure-based intervention. If a patient is found to have minor blockages, their treatment could involve a conservative approach involving changes to diet, temporary medication, and incorporating a Walking Program.
Moderate to Severe Blockage
Patients who have signs of moderate or severe blockage may require additional diagnostic tools and procedures to intervene.
To better visualize the patient’s condition an angiogram or arteriogram is used. An angiogram is an imaging test that uses x-rays and a special dye to see inside the peripheral arteries. This minimally invasive procedure is done in our Modern Vascular clinics in the procedure rooms.
Living with PAD
Peripheral Artery Disease is a chronic disease so early detection is vital and staying on top of it is integral in saving limbs and lives.