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Intermittent Claudication: A Cause of Leg Cramps

The body relies on circulation to ensure that all parts and tissue receive the nourishment they need. When this process is impaired by a condition like peripheral arterial disease, it can lead to a range of issues, including intermittent claudication. Being able to understand and recognize claudication may actually play a big role in keeping you safe from serious medical emergencies.

Peripheral Arterial and Vascular Diseases

Peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and peripheral vascular disease (PVD) are related conditions where the vessels that allow blood to flow to and from the heart become narrowed. These conditions can seriously affect your circulation and need to be addressed. For some individuals, there are no symptoms present. When there a symptom does exist, it is often intermittent claudication.

Leg Cramps during Activity

Essentially, claudication is pain experienced when blood flow is too little, especially during physical activity. When present, it will typically affect the legs, although some patients report feeling it in their arms as well. Initially, the pain will only be noticed while you are active, but as the condition progresses, pain also can be felt during periods of rest. In addition to pain, other symptoms include weakness, a burning or aching feeling, and ulcerations or discolored skin.

Intermittent claudication is typically considered to be a symptom of either PAD or PVD. With either of these conditions, narrowed blood vessels can harden over time as they are clogged with plaque and cholesterol buildup. Other conditions can also cause claudication, like spinal stenosis, deep venous thrombosis, and some musculoskeletal conditions.

Claudication Risk Factors and Complications

Risk factors that make it more likely for an individual to have this problem include obesity, diabetes, smoking, old age, family history, and high cholesterol and/or blood pressure. One of the complications of this problem is the reduced ability for the body to heal injuries, which is particularly concerning for those who live with diabetes. This can create a situation where ulcers or cuts become gangrenous and limb amputation becomes necessary.

Professional Treatment

The three main approaches for professional treatment are medication, angioplasty, or vascular surgery.

Medications that might be used include ones to prevent clotting, reduce symptoms, lower cholesterol, and improve circulation.

Angioplasty is a procedure used to widen blood vessels to increase circulation. Once a vessel has been widened, a stent or small metal tube is placed inside to keep the artery open.

Vascular surgery will typically entail replacing a damaged vessel with a healthy one to alleviate symptoms.

Home Remedies and Lifestyle Choices

With regard to both home remedies and prevention measures, we strongly advise our patients to consider making healthy lifestyle choices to relieve symptoms and reduce the risk of the condition developing in the first place. These include such steps as quitting smoking, getting regular exercise, keeping tabs on cholesterol levels, and eating a well-balanced, nutritionally sound diet.

First-Class Care for Intermittent Claudication in Plano, TX

Treatment for this condition is an important service we provide at Dallas Podiatry Works. In addition to addressing painful symptoms, we can help you lower the risk of dangerous medical conditions like heart attacks and strokes. We are foot doctors, but our concern is with your entire well-being and health. You matter to us and we want to keep you safe!

Contact us today for more information by calling toll-free (888) 716-5283 or schedule an appointment at either our Dallas or Plano, TX podiatrist office online today. We can diagnose your condition and ensure that you receive the care you need.

RATED BEST DALLAS PODIATRIST FOR YOUR FOOT & ANKLE CARE NEEDS
"I did 3 EPAT treatments and it gave me tremendous relief from my plantar fasciitis. I highly recommend this for anyone who is dealing with PF. Also, the physical therapist Dr. Brook sent me too is fantastic. I am definitely on the mend and so glad I did EPAT."- All H. 5 star
"Dr Northcutt is a fantastic physician. My first surgery with him (although painful), went very well. A couple of issues (with his staff) needed to be corrected, I appreciated his calm and professional demeanor and he corrected those issues promptly. He sets the bar high (the mark of a great physician), and that is the key reason why I'm coming back to him to correct my other foot. I would highly recommend him."- She B. 5 star
"The staff at Dallas Podiatry Works could not have been more courteous, helpful, and professional in doing their job. They made me feel comfortable when I was there, which is certainly appreciated. They answered all the questions that I had and just made each visit the most pleasurable that it could be. I would highly recommend them to anyone needing this type of care."- Joseph B. 5 star
"My experience was a good one from pre-op to post -op. I saw the doctor right before my surgery.He explained the process to me and my husband. The recovery nurse was great. It was neither crowded or chaotic as some day surgery centers. My foot is doing well as I follow instructions. I look forward to my one week progress visit!"- Patricia T.5 star
"I had dealt with a painful foot problem for five months and had seen three different Doctors before seeing an article in D Magazine about Dr. Joel Brook. Dr. Brook took one look at my foot, explained the causes for my pain and set me up on a successful treatment plan. He is very knowledgeable, thorough and exhibits a caring attitude. I highly recommend him."- Ginger W. 5 star
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Join the 50,000 happy feet that have found relief at Dallas Podiatry Works! Our Dallas podiatrist provides 5-star-rated foot and ankle care. Our advanced foot care includes children's foot care, foot and ankle sports injuries, stem cell therapy, bunion treatment, toenail restoration, toenail fungus treatment, hammertoe treatment, claw toe treatment, neuroma treatment, heel pain relief, limb salvage, wound care, arthritis treatment, boutique foot services, corn removals, callus removals, wart removals and more.
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