Peripheral vascular disease or PVD is the medical name for the group of medical problems that causes poor circulation to the toes, feet and toes. The major disease in this group is called arteriosclerosis.

Arteriosclerosis, more commonly known as "hardening of the arteries" is a condition in which there is a gradual thickening, hardening, and loss of elasticity in the walls of the arteries. The arteries are the blood vessels that carry the blood from the heart, down to the feet and toes. Arterial insufficiency may also be caused by an obstruction in the artery wall, by the narrowing of arteries. This disease is most common in men over 50 years old.

Diabetes is a major cause of peripheral vascular disease. The diabetic patient lacks the ability to make proper use of the sugar they ingest. As a result, of this sugar builds up, they have many changes in their blood vessels, causing circulation problems, more often than in the normal patient.
Besides diabetes other risk factors for circulatory disorders are heart disease, high blood pressure, smoking, family history of vascular disease, obesity, and elevated cholesterol levels.

Exercise can help circulatory problems. The muscles of the legs have a massaging effect on the blood vessels and help maintain normal passage of the blood. Adequate exercise which is appropriate to a person's general health and age will do much to benefit the entire circulatory system.
Patients that suffer from Peripheral vascular disease should visit a Podiatrist on a regular basis, they should not treat their own feet for corns or callus as an injury to the skin may take longer than normal to heal.











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Page last updated 14 October, 2007