Taking action to control your risk factors can help prevent or delay peripheral artery disease (P.A.D.) and its complications. Know your family history of health problems related to P.A.D. If you or someone in your family has the disease, be sure to tell your doctor. Controlling risk factors includes the following.
- Be physically active.
- Be screened for P.A.D. A simple office test, called an ankle-brachial index or ABI, can help determine whether you have P.A.D.
- Follow heart-healthy eating.
- If you smoke, quit. Talk with your doctor about programs and products that can help you quit smoking.
- If you’re overweight or obese, work with your doctor to create a reasonable weight-loss plan.
The lifestyle changes described above can reduce your risk of developing P.A.D. These changes also can help prevent and control conditions that can be associated with P.A.D., such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, and stroke.