Patient Comments: Peripheral Vascular Disease - Experience

Please describe your experience with peripheral vascular disease.

Comment from: Misty123, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 07

I have always been very active worked 12 hours per day (constantly walking) and was underweight. I have always eaten a healthy diet, with very little meat, I have no diabetes. But, I smoked a pack of cigarettes a day for years. I was in 3 car accidents in 1994 and was having problems with my legs and was diagnosed with peripheral vascular disease. This does not run in my family. I had a fem-pop done on my right leg and was put on Plavix, aspirin, and pentoxifylline. All went fairly well for a few years, I have stopped smoking, no longer able to work, can walk only short distances before stopping because of the leg pain. I had a blood clot go to my right lung from the right leg surgery (pulmonary embolism), I had a right carotidectomy. Now I have been having pain in my left leg especially at night (Charlie horses)or 'rest pain.' My doctor says I will need to get a stent or perhaps another bypass surgery. I do not look forward to this because the first one did not heal and I ended up having two surgeries on my right leg. I'm praying the stent is all I need.

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Comment from: missmomof1, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 07

I was recently told about having PAD. I am 33 yrs old and I have been having issues since I was 23. I've always been going to the doctors and telling them my symptoms and always get put off. It wasn't til one of my veins burst that finally something got figured out. It took 2 years after the vien burst but at least I can finally move on without much trouble. If they would of listened when I was 23, I might not be where I am now. I no longer can work and am constantly fatigued.

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Comment from: ruerue05, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: March 25

I have had peripheral vascular disease for three years. I have had my arteries in my legs cleared about six times. I have seven stents in my legs, one stent in my left kidney, and one stent in my pelvic area. I take Plavix and warfarin each day. I am researching a new drug called cilostazol that I will discuss with my doctor.

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Comment from: Brenda, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: April 01

My mother is 57 and she has this peripheral vascular disease. She is in the hospital as I type this and my heart goes out to each and every one of you. The doctors are now considering amputation, we are devastated! My mother has had over 10 surgeries, 4 in the last 2 months. All of the vein replacement surgeries continue to collapse one after the other. She has been butchered from her right ankle to her groin. She always bounces right back but this time she lost 2 pints of blood and is now receiving a transfusion. I"m 36 and am noticing signs in myself like hot feet, restless legs at night and muscle spasms in my calves periodically. I cannot imagine going through what my mother is going through right now. This disease is horrible and doctors really have no way of explaining your options other than drugs, surgery and amputation as the final decision.

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Comment from: LindaLee, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: December 30

In July 2013 I had severe muscle cramps at night mostly in my right leg, and since I've had a DVT (deep vein thrombosis) in that leg in 2004 I treated myself gently till my doctor did the ultra-sound and it showed a blockage behind my right knee instead of another DVT. I was referred to a vascular surgeon in September because I had no insurance then, and did all the tests he ordered including with a heart doctor to verify there were no problems in the rest of my body, when my insurance took effect. I still didn't hear back from the vascular doctor till I got tired of waiting and suffering. I finally got a re-check appointment (November 13th) after making several calls and was 5 minutes late, then doctor left knowing I had the appointment. Again I waited for them to re-schedule me and just got a call from the office (December 20th) to re-schedule my appointment for mid-January because the doctor won't be working till then. I have some medical training as an x-ray technician and read my own report from October that stated an 11mm blockage (about 1/2 inch) behind my right knee. The medical assistant stated this appointment was a routine 3 month re-check. I'm really confused about the seriousness since everyone along the process pressed me to get medical attention as soon as possible. I don't know if this is normal or I should seek another doctor. I did see my left leg has 2 arteries and now my right leg has 3.

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Peripheral Vascular Disease - Symptoms Question: What are your symptoms associated with peripheral vascular disease?
Peripheral Vascular Disease - Treatments Question: What forms of treatment, including lifestyle changes, have you tried for peripheral vascular disease?

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