Vascular diseases like abdominal aortic aneurysms, carotid disease and peripheral artery disease are serious non-cardiac conditions that afflict many Americans. Oftentimes, people can have these potentially life-threatening vascular diseases without being aware of their condition because there may not be any symptoms in the early stages. While an aortic aneurysm can be fatal, carotid disease can lead to strokes and arterial blockages can result in the loss of a limb. Strokes are the third-leading cause of death in the United States as well as a leading cause of disabilities.
As a result, a vascular screening is used to help detect vascular disease before it has the chance to do serious harm. Early detection can help prevent long-term disabilities and life-threatening complications.
As a preventative tool, vascular screening detects the early signs of atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, and other cardiovascular diseases. This gives you the chance to implement courses of therapy that can slow down or halt their progression. Screenings also aid in identifying already existing cardiovascular disease enabling you to seek proper treatment before the occurrence of a life-threatening event.
This is especially important for those with known risk factors for heart disease and stroke as well as people with a long history of hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes. Other potential risk factors include being overweight smoking and having an inactive lifestyle. The screening may also identify hardening of the arteries before it can be detected by stress or blood tests.
Vascular screening is a painless medical test that checks for the accumulation of fatty deposits within your cardiovascular system. These deposits can create a blockage or narrowing of the arteries that carry blood and oxygen throughout your body. Depending upon where the blockage is located, these constrictions can cause several sudden and severe illnesses, such as a heart attack or stroke.
The screening test identifies signs of possible narrowing or blockages in patients who show no outward symptoms. If a narrowing or blockage is detected, more extensive diagnostic testing can be performed to determine the extent of the disease.
Many forms of vascular disease can be effectively treated when they are detected early. If you are over the age of 55, have a family history of vascular disease or other risk factors like diabetes, contact Miami Vein Center today to schedule a time for a personal consultation with Dr. Almeida, a board certified vascular surgeon. We will discuss the vascular screening process and answer any questions that you may have.