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Why You Should Never Ignore Leg Pain

Leg pain, especially pain that occurs during movement or long periods of immobilization, is a concern that you should never ignore. Pay attention to leg pain, whether it’s sudden or you notice a pattern. Leg pain could signal trouble with your blood vessels. 

Top vascular surgeon Dennis Resetarits, MD, with more than 30 years of experience, helps patients keep their vascular system as healthy as possible. Dr. Resetarits offers a full range of high-quality vascular care at his practice, Surgical Care East, in Camillus, New York.

Recognizing the warning signs of potential vascular problems plays a key role in early intervention. The sooner you recognize issues with your blood vessels, the sooner you can get a thorough evaluation and the appropriate treatment to avoid complications. 

Treating vascular issues early on leads to better management and better outcomes. Here’s what you need to know about the symptoms that may signal an urgent vascular problem.

Why should I pay attention to leg pain?

When you walk and move, your muscles require a lot of oxygen. This oxygen gives working muscles the energy to contract over and over again.

Your body relies on blood vessels to carry oxygen to working muscles. Blood flows freely and uninterrupted when your blood vessels are relaxed, flexible, and open.

But when blood vessels become stiff and narrow, usually from an accumulation of fatty substances like cholesterol, blood has trouble getting to working muscles, especially your legs. In turn, muscles getting inadequate blood flow can’t work efficiently, culminating in cramps and pain. 

Intermittent claudication

The aching, pain, numbness, and burning sensation in your legs when you walk or engage in other physical activities is called intermittent claudication. It typically goes away with rest when the demand for oxygen drops. Your legs may feel heavy, and it may get worse at the end of your day.

Intermittent claudication is a warning sign of narrowing in the blood vessels that supply oxygenated blood to your legs.

Peripheral artery disease

Intermittent claudication is a defining feature of peripheral artery disease (PAD). People with PAD may experience leg weakness and pain during physical activity that stops within minutes of resting. Plaque buildup in the arteries is the primary cause of PAD. 

Adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle and work with Dr. Resetarits to best manage your condition in order to avoid complications.

Deep vein thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a serious vascular condition that begins with blood clot in one of the deep veins in your body. This often happens in the thigh or lower leg due to injury or following surgery to the hips or legs. Sitting for extended periods, such as on a long flight, is also a risk factor. 

DVT can have serious consequences. If the clot breaks off, it can travel to your lungs and cause a life-threatening pulmonary embolism. 

Seek care for venous disease

Inadequate blood flow to your legs can cause a range of complications, including poor wound-healing and the development of leg ulcers. Without proper management, what began as a small cut can easily escalate into a large open wound that gets infected and threatens your health.

Venous disease requires specialized care. With the right management, you can prevent complications, keep your vascular system as healthy as possible, and lead a good quality of life. To get started, call our Camillus, New York, office or request an appointment via our website today.

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